Antifungal activity of various plant oils against yeast isolates from ICU patients


  • Akansha Suman Department of Pharmacology, Muzaffarnagar Medical College, Muzaffarnagar, Uttar Pradesh, India
  • Sapna Chauhan Department of Microbiology, Muzaffarnagar Medical College, Muzaffarnagar, Uttar Pradesh, India
  • Suman Lata Department of Pharmacology, Muzaffarnagar Medical College, Muzaffarnagar, Uttar Pradesh, India
  • Rajeev K. Sharma Department of Pharmacology, Muzaffarnagar Medical College, Muzaffarnagar, Uttar Pradesh, India



Antifungal activity, Essential plant oils, Resistance, Yeast isolates


Background: To evaluate the in-vitro antifungal activity of various essential plant oils against yeast species.

Methods: The present study was a prospective study conducted in Department of Microbiology along with Department of Pharmacology at Tertiary care teaching hospital. Various clinical samples from ICU patients were inoculated on Sabourauds Dextrose Agar (SDA) in accordance with the standard methods. Yeast isolates were recovered and identified as per standard recommended procedure. The antifungal activity of plant oils against these isolated yeasts was determined using disc diffusion method. The results were interpreted as <9mm-inactive, 9-12mm-partially active, 13-18mm-very active. Fluconazole and Itraconazole were taken as control drugs.

Results: The various yeast isolated were C. albicans, C. tropicals, C. krusei, C. glabrata, C. gulliermondi, C. keyfr, Cryptococcus and Tricosporon. Among essential plant oils, Cinnamon oil and clove oil showed high activity against all isolated yeast species. Olive oil showed least antifungal activity. Fluconazole was resistant in all yeast isolates, while Itraconazole was sensitive to all yeast isolates. Sensitivity of cinnamon and clove oil was statistically significant than Itraconazole.

Conclusions: To conclude present study shows the potential of essential plant oils as newer therapeutic alternatives to antifungal drugs. These may be used in combination with antifungal agents to overcome drug resistance, adverse effects and in shortening the long-term treatment with antifungal drugs. Thus, these essential plant oils can be used in future as antifungal agents in azoles resistant strains.


Sharanappa R, Vidyasagar GM. Anti-candida activity of medicinal plants: A review. Int J of Pharm Pharm Sci. 2013;5(4):9-16.

Pfaller MA, Pappas PG, Wingard JR. Invasive fungal pathogens:current epidemiological trends. Clin Infect Dis. 2006;43(1):3-14.

Fadda ME, Podda GS, Pisano MB., Deplan M, Cosentino S. Prevelanc of Candida species in different hospital wards and their susceptibility to antifungal agents: Results of a three-year survey. J Prev Med Hyg. 2008;49(2):69-74.

Arnold L. Colombo, Ana Carolina B. Padovan, Guilherme M. Chanes. Current knowledge of Trichisporon species and Trichosporiosis. Clinical Microbiology Reviews. 2011;24(4):682-700.

Kett DH, Shorr AF, Reboli AC. Anidula fungin compared with fluconazole in severely ill patients with candedemia and other forms of invasive candidiasis: support for the 2009 IDSA treatment guidelines for candidiasis. Crit Care. 2011;15(5):253.

Dean SG. Evaluation of antimicrobial activity of essential (volatile) oils. In: Linskens HF, Jackson JF, eds. Modern methods of plant analysis. New Series Essential Oils and Waxes.1991;12:309-18.

Shuford JA, Piper KE, Steckelberg JM, Patel R. In vitro biofilm characterization and activity of antifungal agents alone and in combination against sessile and planktonic clinical Candida albicans isolates. Diag Microbiol Infect Dis. 2007;57:277-81.

Sheehan DJ, Hitchcock CA, Sibely CM. Current and emerging azole antifungal agents. Clin microbial Rev. 1999;12:40-79.

Upadhya RK, Dwivedi P, Ahmad S. Screening of antibacterial activity of six plants essential oils against pathogenic bacterial strain. Asian J Med Sci. 2010;2:152-8.

Rathi SG, Bhaskar VH, Patel PG. In vitro antifungal screening of Embelia ribes. Plant Extract through EUCAST Method. Int J Pharma Sci Res. 2010; 1:134-8.

Tabassum N, Vidyasagar GM. Antifungal investigations on plant essential oils: A review. Int J Pharm Pharm Sci. 2013;5(2):19-28.

Anupama N, Devkatte, Gajanan B, Zore, S. Mohan Karuppayil.Potential of plant oils as inhibitor of Candida albicans growth. FEMS Yeast Research. 2005;5:867-73.

Koneman, EW, Allen SD, Janda WM, Schreckenberger PC. Mycology. In: Color Atlas and Textbook of Diagnostic Microbiology, 5th edn. Lippincott Williams and Wilkins, Philadelphia, PA. 1997;983-1057.

Cristiane D, Silva S, Guterres E, Vanessa W, Elfrids ES, Schapobal. Antifungal acvity of the lemongrass oil and citral against Candida Sepses. The Brazilian Journal of Infection Disease. 2008;12(1):63-6.

Flori ACG, Schwan-Estrada KRF, Stangarlin JR, Vida JB, Scapim CA, Guz MES, et al. Antifungal activity of Leaf extracts and Essential Oils of Some Medicinal Plants against Didmellabryonial J Phytopathol. 2000;148:483.

Junior A, Zanil C. Biological screening of Brazilian medicinal plants. Bra J Sci. 2000;95:367-73.

Garbino J, Adam A. Use of high-dose liposomal amphotericin B: efficacy and tolerance. Acta Biomed. 2006;77(4):19-22.

Garber G. An overview of fungal infections. Drug. 2001;61(1):1-12.

Giri S, Kindo AJ. A review of Candida species causing bloodstream infections. Indian J Med Microbiol. 2012;30:270-8.

Harris R. Progress with superficial mycoses using essential oils. Internat J Aromatherapy. 2002;12:83-91.

Castro, Ricardo D, and Lima, Edeltrudes Q. Anti-candidial activity and chemical composition of Cinnamomum zeylanicum blume essential oil. Brazilian archives Biol Technol. 2013;56(5):749-55.

Amit K, Suresh T, Vishal CT, Ajay K, Sandip P and Vohra MP. Antifungal activity of some natural essential oils against candida species isolated from blood stream infection. J Krishna Institute Medic Scis Universit. 2012;1(1):61-6.

Hammer KA, Carson CF, Riley TV. Antimicrobial activity of essential oils and other plant extracts. J Applied Microbiol. 1999;86:985-90.

Pina-Vaz C, Gonçalves Rodrigues A, Pinto E, Costa-de-Oliveira S, Tavares C, Salgueiro L. Antifungal activity of Thymus oils and their major compounds. J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol. 2004;18(1):73-8.

Carson CF, Hammer KA, Riley TV. Melaleuca alternifolia (tea tree) oil: Review of antimicrobials and other medical properties. Clin Microbiol Review. 2006;19(1):50-62.

Vishnu A, Priyanka L, Vikas P. Effect of plant oils on Candida. albicans. J Microbial Immunol Infect. 2010; 43(5):447-51.

Nidhi G, Hina R, Gajendra S, Parul P. Antifungal Activity of Cinnamon oil and Olive oil against Candida Spp. Isolated from Blood Stream Infections. J Clin Diagnostic Res. 2016;10(8):9-11.

Parvez AK, Nazish F, Nabeela, Sarvar J, Haris MK, Abida M. Antifungal susceptibility pattern of Candida isolates from a Tertiary Care hospital of North India:a five year study. Int J Curr Microbiol Applied Sci. 2015;1:177-81.

Kothari A, Sagar V. Epidemiology of Candida bloodstream infections in a tertiary care institute in India. Indian J Med Microbial. 2008;27:171-2.




How to Cite

Suman, A., Chauhan, S., Lata, S., & Sharma, R. K. (2017). Antifungal activity of various plant oils against yeast isolates from ICU patients. International Journal of Research in Medical Sciences, 5(7), 3227–3230.



Original Research Articles