Antibacterial activity of Momordica charantia (Curcubitaceae) extracts and fractions

Author(s): José Galberto M Costa, Eidla M. M. Nascimento, Adriana R Campos, Fabiola F. G. Rodrigues

Momordica charantia L. belongs to the family Curcubitaceae and it is very common in many Brazilian regions. The plant is a liana with flowers and yellow fruits that present red seeds when are ripe. Popularly known as “melão-de-são-caetano”, “melão amargo” or “cabaço-amargo”, it possesses many uses: antidiabetic, antihelmintic, antmicrobial, anticancerigenous and antioxidant. The phytochemical prospection of the fresh and dried leaves extracts showed the presence of different classes of secondary metabolites, as flavonoids, alkaloids and tannins, that have dem-onstrated antimicrobial action. Fresh and dried leaves presented significantly anti-microbial activity against all bacterial strains tested, specially Escherichia coli. Ethyl acetate fractions were effective against Escherichia coli and Bacillus cereus. The mod-ulatory activity was significative too.

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