Pet turtles are well-known to harbor an array of bacterial pathogens which can cause zoonotic infections in humans as well as opportunistic infections in the turtles itself. Essential oils are the natural plant extracts which have been traditionally used for disease treatment. In the present study, the essential oil of lavender (EOL) was examined for its antibacterial activity against thirty-eight strains of turtle-borne pathogenic bacteria belonging to seven species; Aeromonas hydrophila, A. caviae, A. dhakensis, Citrobacter freundii, Proteus mirabilis, Salmonella enterica and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Antibacterial activity of EOL was tested by means of disk diffusion, minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC), and minimum bactericidal concentration (MBC) tests. In addition, the antimicrobial susceptibility pattern of 11 commonly used antimicrobials was examined and the multiple antibiotic resistance (MAR) index was calculated. The results revealed that EOL was active against all tested turtle-borne pathogenic bacteria except P. aeruginosa. The range of MIC and MBC values of EOL against isolates except P. aeruginosa were recorded as 0.5-1% (V/V) and 0.5-2% (V/V), respectively. The MBC/MIC ratio was detected as <4, revealing that the tested EOL was bactericidal. Besides, most of the isolates were resistant to different antimicrobials in antimicrobial disk diffusion test. MAR index values of the tested strains were ranging from 0.27 to 0.91. The outcomes indicate that EOL has a potential to be used as an antibacterial agent against pathogenic bacteria isolated from pet turtles.
Keywords: Essential oil of lavender; antibacterial activity; pathogenic bacteria; pet turtles.