Activity of tea tree (Melaleuca alternifolia) essential oil against L3 larvae of Anisakis simplex

Biomed Res Int. 2014;2014:549510. doi: 10.1155/2014/549510. Epub 2014 May 25.

Abstract

Nematicidal activity of Melaleuca alternifolia essential oil, commonly known as tea tree oil (TTO), was assayed in vitro against L3 larvae of Anisakis simplex. The results showed a mortality of 100% for concentrations between 7 and 10 μL/mL after 48 h of incubation, obtaining an LD50 value of 4.53 μL/mL after 24 hours and 4.27 μL/mL after 48 hours. Concentration-dependent inhibition of acetylcholinesterase was observed for tea tree essential oil showing inhibition values of 100% at 100 μL/mL. This fact suggests that TTO may act as an AChE inhibitor. Terpinen-4-ol was discarded as main larvicide compound as it did not show larvicidal or anticholinesterase activity. The data obtained suggest that the essential oil of Melaleuca alternifolia may have a great therapeutic potential for the treatment of human anisakiasis.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anisakis / growth & development*
  • Anthelmintics / chemistry
  • Anthelmintics / pharmacology*
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Humans
  • Larva / growth & development
  • Melaleuca / chemistry*
  • Oils, Volatile / chemistry
  • Oils, Volatile / pharmacology*

Substances

  • Anthelmintics
  • Oils, Volatile