Antifungal activity of the essential oil of Angelica major against Candida, Cryptococcus, Aspergillus and dermatophyte species

J Nat Med. 2015 Apr;69(2):241-8. doi: 10.1007/s11418-014-0884-2. Epub 2015 Jan 10.


The composition and antifungal activity of the essential oil (EO) of Angelica major and its main components α-pinene and cis-β-ocimene against clinically relevant yeasts and moulds were evaluated. EO from the plant's aerial parts was obtained by hydrodistillation and analysed by gas chromatography (GC) and gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS). The oil showed high contents of α-pinene (21.8 %) and cis-β-ocimene (30.4 %). Minimum inhibitory concentrations (MICs) were measured according to the broth macrodilution protocols by the Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute (CLSI). The EO, α-pinene and cis-β-ocimene displayed low MICs and minimum fungicidal concentrations (MFCs) against dermatophytes and Cryptococcus neoformans, with α-pinene being the most active. Regarding Candida species, the EO susceptibility profiles seem to be diverse and not correlated with fluconazole susceptibility patterns. Moreover, an inhibition of yeast-mycelium transition was demonstrated at sub-inhibitory concentrations of the EO, α-pinene and cis-β-ocimene in C. albicans. In addition, their haemolytic activity was low. The activity displayed by A. major EO and its main components associated with low cytotoxic activity confirms their potential as an antifungal agent against fungal species frequently implicated in human mycoses, particularly cryptococcosis and dermatophytosis. The association with commercial antifungal compounds could bring benefits, by the effect on germ tube formation, and be used in mucocutaneous candidiasis treatment.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acyclic Monoterpenes
  • Alkenes / analysis
  • Alkenes / pharmacology*
  • Angelica / chemistry*
  • Antifungal Agents / pharmacology*
  • Arthrodermataceae / drug effects
  • Aspergillus / drug effects
  • Bicyclic Monoterpenes
  • Candida / drug effects
  • Cryptococcus / drug effects
  • Fungi / drug effects*
  • Humans
  • Microbial Sensitivity Tests
  • Monoterpenes / analysis
  • Monoterpenes / pharmacology*
  • Mycelium / drug effects
  • Oils, Volatile / chemistry
  • Oils, Volatile / pharmacology*
  • Phytotherapy
  • Plant Extracts / chemistry
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Yeasts / drug effects


  • Acyclic Monoterpenes
  • Alkenes
  • Antifungal Agents
  • Bicyclic Monoterpenes
  • Monoterpenes
  • Oils, Volatile
  • Plant Extracts
  • beta-ocimene
  • alpha-pinene