In vitro screening of five local medicinal plants for antibacterial activity using disc diffusion method

Trop Biomed. 2005 Dec;22(2):165-70.


Medicinal plants have many traditional claims including the treatment of ailments of infectious origin. In the evaluation of traditional claims, scientific research is important. The objective of the study was to determine the presence of antibacterial activity in the crude extracts of some of the commonly used medicinal plants in Malaysia, Andrographis paniculata, Vitex negundo, Morinda citrifolia, Piper sarmentosum, and Centella asiatica. In this preliminary investigation, the leaves were used and the crude extracts were subjected to screening against five strains of bacteria species, Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), Staphylococcus aureus, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Escherichia coli, using standard protocol of Disc Diffusion Method (DDM). The antibacterial activities were assessed by the presence or absence of inhibition zones and MIC values. M. citrifolia, P. sarmentosum and C. asiatica methanol extract and A. paniculata (water extract) have potential antibacterial activities to both gram positive S. aureus and Methicillin Resistant S. aureus (MRSA). None of the five plant extracts tested showed antibacterial activities to gram negative E. coli and K. pneumoniae, except for A. paniculata and P. sarmentosum which showed activity towards P. aeruginosa. A. paniculata being the most potent at MIC of 2 g/disc. This finding forms a basis for further studies on screening of local medicinal plant extracts for antibacteria properties.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / pharmacology*
  • Centella / chemistry
  • Disk Diffusion Antimicrobial Tests
  • Gram-Negative Bacteria / classification
  • Gram-Negative Bacteria / drug effects*
  • Humans
  • Magnoliopsida / chemistry*
  • Magnoliopsida / classification
  • Malaysia
  • Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus / drug effects*
  • Morinda / chemistry
  • Phytotherapy
  • Piper / chemistry
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Plant Leaves / chemistry
  • Plants, Medicinal / chemistry*
  • Plants, Medicinal / classification
  • Staphylococcus aureus / drug effects*


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Plant Extracts