Antiproliferative and antimicrobial activity of traditional Kombucha and Satureja montana L. Kombucha

J BUON. 2008 Jul-Sep;13(3):395-401.


Purpose: To carry out a preliminary investigation of the biological activity of Kombucha beverages from Camellia sinensis L. (black tea) and Satureja montana L. (winter savory tea), that have consuming acidity.

Materials and methods: Cell growth effect was measured by sulforhodamine B colorimetric assay on HeLa (cervix epithelioid carcinoma), HT-29 (colon adenocarcinoma), and MCF-7 (breast adenocarcinoma). Antimicrobial activity to bacteria, yeasts and moulds was determined by agar-well diffusion method.

Results: Consuming Kombuchas had the most expressive antimicrobial activity against all investigated bacteria, except Sarcina lutea, while unfermented tea samples had no activity. Traditional Kombucha showed higher activity against Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli than acetic acid, while both neutralized Kombuchas had bacteriostatic activity on Salmonella enteritidis. Examined Kombuchas did not stimulate cell proliferation of the investigated cell lines. Antiproliferative activity of winter savory tea Kombucha was comparable to that of traditional Kombucha made from black tea. Furthermore, in HeLa cell line Satureja montana L. Kombucha induced cell growth inhibition by 20% (IC20) at lower concentration compared to the activity of water extract of Satureja montana L. obtained in our previous research.

Conclusion: Presence of more active antiproliferative component(s) in Satureja montana L. Kombucha compared to Satureja montana L. water extract and antimicrobial component(s) other than acetic acid in both Kombuchas is suggested.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Infective Agents / pharmacology*
  • Bacteria / drug effects*
  • Beverages*
  • Camellia sinensis*
  • Cell Proliferation / drug effects*
  • Humans
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Satureja*
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured / drug effects


  • Anti-Infective Agents
  • Plant Extracts