Antibacterial activity of guava (Psidium guajava L.) and Neem (Azadirachta indica A. Juss.) extracts against foodborne pathogens and spoilage bacteria

Foodborne Pathog Dis. 2007 Winter;4(4):481-8. doi: 10.1089/fpd.2007.0040.


The antibacterial activity of guava (Psidium guajava) and neem (Azadirachta indica) extracts against 21 strains of foodborne pathogens were determined--Listeria monocytogenes (five strains), Staphylococcus aureus (four strains), Escherichia coli O157:H7 (six strains), Salmonella Enteritidis (four strains), Vibrio parahaemolyticus, and Bacillus cereus, and five food spoilage bacteria: Pseudomonas aeroginosa, P. putida, Alcaligenes faecalis, and Aeromonas hydrophila (two strains). Guava and neem extracts showed higher antimicrobial activity against Gram-positive bacteria compared to Gram-negative bacteria except for V. parahaemolyticus, P. aeroginosa, and A. hydrophila. None of the extracts showed antimicrobial activity against E. coli O157:H7 and Salmonella Enteritidis. The minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) of ethanol extracts of guava showed the highest inhibition for L. monocytogenes JCM 7676 (0.1 mg/mL), S. aureus JCM 2151 (0.1 mg/mL), S. aureus JCM 2179 (0.1 mg/mL), and V. parahaemolyticus IFO 12711 (0.1 mg/mL) and the lowest inhibition for Alcaligenes faecalis IFO 12669, Aeromonas hydrophila NFRI 8282 (4.0 mg/mL), and A. hydrophila NFRI 8283 (4.0 mg/mL). The MIC of chloroform extracts of neem showed similar inhibition for L. monocytogenes ATCC 43256 (4.0 mg/mL) and L. monocytogenes ATCC 49594 (5.0 mg/mL). However, ethanol extracts of neem showed higher inhibition for S. aureus JCM 2151 (4.5 mg/mL) and S. aureus IFO 13276 (4.5 mg/mL) and the lower inhibition for other microorganisms (6.5 mg/mL). No significant effects of temperature and pH were found on guava and neem extracts against cocktails of L. monocytogenes and S. aureus. The results of the present study suggest that guava and neem extracts possess compounds containing antibacterial properties that can potentially be useful to control foodborne pathogens and spoilage organisms.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / pharmacology*
  • Azadirachta / chemistry*
  • Colony Count, Microbial
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Ethanol
  • Food Microbiology
  • Food Preservation / methods*
  • Gram-Negative Bacteria / drug effects*
  • Gram-Negative Bacteria / growth & development
  • Gram-Positive Bacteria / drug effects*
  • Gram-Positive Bacteria / growth & development
  • Humans
  • Hydrogen-Ion Concentration
  • Microbial Sensitivity Tests
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Psidium / chemistry*
  • Species Specificity
  • Temperature


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Plant Extracts
  • Ethanol