Antibacterial activity of berry juices, an in vitro study

Acta Odontol Scand. 2015;73(7):539-43. doi: 10.3109/00016357.2014.887773. Epub 2015 Mar 2.


Objective: The aim of the present study was to evaluate in vitro antibacterial activities of blackcurrant and sea buckthorn juices on bacteria associated with gingival inflammation.

Materials and methods: The growth of selected bacteria (Streptococcus mitis, Streptococcus mutans, Streptococcus sanguinis, Streptococcus gordonii, Staphylococcus aureus, Staphylococcus epidermidis and Pseudomonas aeruginosa) was studied in vitro on agar plates. The content of phenols in the different extracts was measured with HPLC-ESI-MS.

Results: The spectrometric analysis identified that the highest level of the single phenols studied was found for ferulic acid (113 μg/ml) in blackcurrant juice. Sea buckthorn contained low levels of selected phenols. Total bacterial inhibition for all bacterial species studied was found at 20% berry juice concentration with pH varying between 4.1-5.4.

Conclusions: The present study identified that in vitro bacterial growth on agar plates was inhibited by blackcurrant and sea buckthorn juices and that low juice pH explains bacterial in vitro growth. This may have clinical implications in biofilm development, reducing the risks for both tooth decay and gingivitis.

Keywords: berries; microbiology; pH; periodontal disease; polyphenols.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / pharmacology*
  • Bacteriological Techniques
  • Biofilms / drug effects
  • Chlorogenic Acid / analysis
  • Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid
  • Coumaric Acids / analysis
  • Fruit*
  • Hippophae*
  • Humans
  • Hydrogen-Ion Concentration
  • Materials Testing
  • Phenols / analysis
  • Phenols / pharmacology
  • Plant Extracts / analysis
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa / drug effects
  • Ribes*
  • Spectrometry, Mass, Electrospray Ionization
  • Staphylococcus aureus / drug effects
  • Staphylococcus epidermidis / drug effects
  • Streptococcus gordonii / drug effects
  • Streptococcus mutans / drug effects
  • Streptococcus sanguis / drug effects


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Coumaric Acids
  • Phenols
  • Plant Extracts
  • Chlorogenic Acid
  • ferulic acid