Home | About PR | Editorial board | Search | Ahead of print | Current Issue | Archives | Instructions | Subscribe | Advertise | Contact us |   Login 
Pharmacognosy Magazine
Search Article 
Advanced search 

Year : 2009  |  Volume : 1  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 21-24 Table of Contents     

Chemical composition and antimicrobial activity of the essential oil of Artemisia annua L. from Iran

Department of Pharmacognosy, Faculty of Pharmacy, and Medicinal Plants Research Center, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

Date of Submission10-Sep-2008
Date of Decision07-Dec-2008
Date of Acceptance07-Dec-2008
Date of Web Publication2-Jan-2010

Correspondence Address:
M R Verdian-rizi
Department of Pharmacognosy, Faculty of Pharmacy, and Medicinal Plants Research Center, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran
Login to access the Email id

Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

Rights and PermissionsRights and Permissions

The composition of the essential oil obtained from the dried flowering aerial parts of Artemisia annua L. (Compositae) was analysed by GC and GC/MS. Thirty-two components were identified in the essential oil of A. annua L. with campher (48.00%), 1,8-cineole (9.39%), camphene (6.98%) and spathulenol (4.89%) as major components. The essential oil was evaluated for antibacterial and antifungal activities . The activity was more pronounced against fungal organisms than against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria.

Keywords: Artemisia annua L .; essential oil; GC/MS; antimicrobial activity

How to cite this article:
Verdian-rizi M R. Chemical composition and antimicrobial activity of the essential oil of Artemisia annua L. from Iran. Phcog Res 2009;1:21-4

How to cite this URL:
Verdian-rizi M R. Chemical composition and antimicrobial activity of the essential oil of Artemisia annua L. from Iran. Phcog Res [serial online] 2009 [cited 2020 Sep 20];1:21-4. Available from: http://www.phcogres.com/text.asp?2009/1/1/21/58143

   Introduction Top

The genus Artemisia (Family Compositae) belongs to a useful group of aromatic and medicinal plants comprising about 300 species found in the northern hemisphere [1] . There are approximately 34 native Artemisia spp. in Iran [2] . This large genus has been the subject of numerous chemical studies [3] . Artemisia spp. have been reported to contain number of coumarins, flavones and terpenes [4] .

Artemisia annua L. is an annual herb native of Asia and has been used for many centuries in the treatment of fever and malaria. Many secondary metabolites of terpene peroxides are isolated from Artemisia annua L. , such as artemisia ketone, artemisinic alcohol, arteannuin B and myrcene hydroperoxide [5],[6] . Some of them also can be found in essential oil [7] . With the increasing tendency for the use of volatile oils in both the food and the pharmaceutical industries, a systematic examination of plant extracts for antimicrobial activity is very important. As a part of our studies on the chemical composition of the essential oils and screening program for bioactive compounds from plants that grow in Iran, this paper describes the composition of the essential oil of flowering aerial parts of A. annua L. and its antimicrobial activity .

   Material and Methods Top

Plant material

The flowering aerial parts of A. annua L. were collected in July 2006, from the Gorgan province, north of Iran. A voucher specimen was deposited at the Herbarium of Faculty of Pharmacy, Tehran University of Medical Sciences.

Isolation of the essential oil

The flowering aerial parts (100 g) were dried at 25C in the shade and subjected to hydrodistillation, using a Clevenger-type apparatus for 4 h. The oil was dried with anhydrous sodium sulphate, weighed and stored at 4-6C until use.

Gas chromatography/ mass spectrometry

FID-GC was carried out using a Hewlett-Packard 6890 with HP-5 capillary column (phenyl methyl siloxane, 25 m . 0.25 mm i.d., 0.25 μm film thickness); carrier gas, He; split ratio, 1:25, and flame ionization detector. Temperature program: 60 C (2 min) rising to 240C at 4C/min; injector temperature, 250C, detector temperature, 260C. GC-MS was performed using a Hewlett-Packard 6859 with a quadrupole detector, on a HP-5 column (see GC), operating at 70 eV ionization energy, using the same temperature programme and carrier gas as above. Retention indices were calculated by using retention times of n-alkanes that were injected after the oil at the same chromatographic conditions according to Van Den Dool method.

Identification of components

The linear retention indices for all the compounds were determined by coinjection of the sample with a solution containing the homologous series of C8-C22 n -alkanes. The individual constituents were identified by their identical retention indices, referring to known compounds from the literature [8] and also by comparing their mass spectra with either the known compounds or with the Wiley mass spectral database.

Antimicrobial activity - The antimicrobial and antifungal activities of the essential oil was determined against Staphylococcus aureus (ATCC 29737), Echerichia coli (ATCC 8739), Pseudomonas aeruginosa (ATCC 9027), Saccharomyces cerevisiae (ATCC 16404) and Candida albicans (ATCC 14053). Bacterial and fungal strains were tested on soybean casein digest agar and Sabouraud dextrose agar, respectively. Sterilized paper disks were loaded with different amount of A. annua L. essential oil (0.25, 0.5, 1, 2, 4, 8, 16, 32 and 64 mg/ml) and applied on the surface of agar plates. All plates were incubated at 37C for 24 h for bacteria; at 25C for 24 h for C. albicans. The MIC was defined as the lowest drug concentration, resulting in a clear zone of growth inhibition around the disk after conventional incubation period. 23 Paper disks containing different concentrations of fluconazole and gentamycin (Sigma Chemical Co.) were applied over the test plates as a comparative positive control.

   Results and Discussion Top

The hydrodistillaton of the dried flowering aerial parts of A. annua L. gave a light yellowish oil with yield of 1.2 % (v/w). Thirty - two components were identified in the oil, representing 96.76 % of the total composition [Table 1]. The major components of the essential oil were campher (48.00 %), 1,8 - cineole (9.39 %), camphene (6.98 %) and spathulenol (4.695 %). The oil consist of 24 monoterpenoids (83.72%) and 7 sesquiterpenoids (12.59 %). The essential oil of the dried flowering aerial parts of A. annua L. was rich in monoterpenoids.

The results obtained in the antimicrobial assay are shown in [Table 2]. The oil showed antimicrobial activity against all the tested microorganisms, excepted Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Maximum activity was observed against fungal microorganisms Saccharomyces cerevisiae (MIC = 2 mg/ml) and Candida albicans (MIC = 2 mg/ml). Moderate inhibitory activity of the oil against Staphylococcus aureus and Echerichia coli were also determined with MIC value of 32 mg/ml and 64 mg/ml respectively. No activity was observed against Pseudomonas aeruginosa. In the present study Gram-positive bacteria Staphylococcus aureus was more susceptible than Gram-negative bacteria strains. It has frequently been reported that Gram-negative bacteria were resistant to the inhibitory effects of essential oils and their components [9] . This resistance has been attributed to the presence of cell wall lipopolysaccharides, which can screen out the essential oils; the lipids are thus prevented from accumulating on the transporting cell membrane, and from entering the cells.

   Acknowledgement Top

We are grateful to acknowledgment the Faculty of Pharmacy, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, for the financial support of this investigation.

   References Top

1.Katayoun, M., M. Akbarzadeh, K. Moshiri, 2005. Essential oil composition of Artemisia fragrans Willd. from Iran. Flavour Fragr J 20: 330 - 331.  Back to cited text no. 1      
2.Mozaffarian, V. 1996. A Dictionary of Iranian Plant Names. Farhang Moaser: Tehran, Iran, p. 56- 58.  Back to cited text no. 2      
3.Smith-Palmer A, Stewart J, Fyfe L. 1998. Antimicrobial properties of plant essential oils and essences against five important food-borne pathogens. Lett Appl Microbiol 26: 118-122.  Back to cited text no. 3      
4.Marco, J.A., J.F. Sanz-Cervera, F.J. Ropero, 1998. Germacranolides and a monoterpene cyclic peroxide from Artemisia fragrans. Phytochem 47: 1417- 1419.  Back to cited text no. 4      
5.Ma, C., H. Wang , X. Lu , H. Li , B. Liu , G. Xu, 2007. Analysis of Artemisia annua L. volatile oil by comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography time-of-flight mass spectrometry. J Chromatogr A 50: 50-53.  Back to cited text no. 5      
6.Bertea, C.M., J.R.Freije, H. van der Woude, F.W.A. Verstappen, L. Perk, V.Marquez, J.W. De Kraker, M.A. Posthumus, B.J.M. Jansen, A. de Groot, M.C.R. Franssen, H.J. Bouwmeester, 2005. Identification of intermediates and enzymes involved in the early steps of artemisinin biosynthesis in Artemisia annua. Planta Med 71: 40-47.  Back to cited text no. 6      
7.Brown, G.D., G.Y. Liang, L. Sy, 2003. Terpenoids from the seeds of Artemisia annua. Phytochem 64. 303-323.  Back to cited text no. 7      
8.Ahmad, A., L.N. Mishra, 1994. Terpenoids from Artemisia annua and constituents of its essential oil. Phytochem 37: 183-186 .  Back to cited text no. 8      
9.Adams, R.P. 1995. Identification of Essential Oil Components by Gas Chromatography and Mass Spectroscopy. Allured: Carol Stream, IL.  Back to cited text no. 9      


  [Table 1], [Table 2]


    Similar in PUBMED
   Search Pubmed for
   Search in Google Scholar for
 Related articles
    Access Statistics
    Email Alert *
    Add to My List *
* Registration required (free)  

  In this article
    Material and Methods
    Results and Disc...
    Article Tables

 Article Access Statistics
    PDF Downloaded111    
    Comments [Add]    

Recommend this journal