Ethnopharmacological relevance: Essential oils of palmarosa and citronella have been extensively used in ancient Indian and South-east Asian traditional medicines.
Aim of the study: These essential oils have been reported to exhibit antimicrobial, anti parasitic effects against bacteria, yeasts, filamentous fungi, and viruses. In the present study the oils were tested for their potential antigenotoxic and antioxidant properties in human lymphocyte cells.
Materials and methods: The antigenotoxic effect on human lymphocyte cells (measurement of cell viability, DNA damage) was studied using trypan blue dye exclusion test, plasmid pBR322 DNA strand scission, and comet assay. Anti-oxidant activity was evaluated by DPPH(+) free radical scavenging and lipid peroxidation assay.
Results: The essential oils showed a good antigenotoxic activity against methyl methanesulphonate (MMS) and hydrogen peroxide. In addition, a significant dose dependent antioxidant activity was observed.
Conclusion: Our data provide evidence that support the usage of palmarosa and citronella essential oils in traditional herbal preparations. They can constitute a natural source of a new and safe antioxidant.
Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.