International Journal of Phytotherapy and Ethnobotany Vol. 1 (2), pp. 021-024, November, 2013. © International Scholars Journals

Full Length Research Paper

The antimicrobial activity of Croton membranaceus, a species used in formulations for measles in Ghana

Marcel T. Bayor1*, Stephen Y. Gbedema1 and Kofi Annan2

1Department of Pharmaceutics, Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, College of Health Sciences, Kwame

Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), Kumasi, Ghana.

2Department of Pharmacognosy, Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, College of Health Sciences, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), Kumasi, Ghana.

*Corresponding author. E-mail; mtbayor@yahoo.com. Tel.: +233 244115666.

Accepted 3 September, 2013

Abstract

The antimicrobial activity of the methanolic root extract and compounds isolated from Croton membranaceus against the bacteria; Staphylococcus aureus, Bacillus subtilis, Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and fungi; Aspergillus niger and Candida albicans, using the agar diffusion and broth dilution techniques was studied in order to establish its possible usefulness in the treatment of measles. The methanolic extract showed a significant (p < 0.01) antibacterial and antifungal activity against the test organisms used with minimum inhibitory concentrations (MICs) ranging from 0.53 - 1.43 mg/ml. Out of the six compounds tested (crotomembranafuran, gomojoside H, julocrotine, -sitosterol, -sitosterol-3-D-glucoside, and DL-threitol), gomojoside H, showed significant antibacterial activity against; S. aureus, B. subtilis and P. aeruginosa (MICs < 10 g/ml). The other compounds exhibited no significant antimicrobial activity (MICs > 200 g/ml). The activities of gomojoside H were found to be similar to the effects of gentamicin on these organisms. The results therefore indicated that this compound is a potent antibacterial and its presence appears to explain in part the antimicrobial activity exhibited by the C. membranaceus root extract and supports its usefulness in treating secondary bacterial infection in measles.

Key words: Croton membranaceus, gomojoside H, antibacterial activity, measles.