Olive leaves, an agricultural waste, have great potential as a natural antioxidant. The current study was made to assess the antioxidant and antimicrobial activities of both the individual and combined phenolics in olive leaf extract. A combined phenolics mixture was prepared by amount ratios of the phenolic compounds in the olive leaf extract. The results showed that both the individual and combined phenolics exhibited good radical scavenging abilities, and also revealed superoxide dismutase (SOD)-like activity. In terms of antimicrobial activity, both oleuropein and caffeic acid showed inhibition effects against microorganisms. Furthermore, the antimicrobial effect of the combined phenolics was significantly higher than those of the individual phenolics. These results show that the combination of olive leaf extract phenolics possessed antioxidant and antimicrobial activities. This study indicates that olive leaf extract might be a valuable bioactive source, and would seem to be applicable in both the health and medical food.
Copyright 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.