Impact of vegetable extracts on selected cariogenic bacteria

Kutcharlapati Sunita Raju, Kalla Appala Naidu, Layam Anitha


Dental caries is a localized, transmissible infection that ends up in the destruction of hard dental tissue. It results from the accumulation of plaque on the surface of teeth and biochemical activities of complex microorganisms. Streptococcus mutans is one of the main opportunist pathogen of dental caries, which plays a major role in fermenting carbohydrates that result in acid production, leading to the corrosion of tooth enamel. In addition, other microorganisms like Lactobacillus species, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Staphylococcus aureus are also associated with active caries lesions. Lactobacillus acidophilus is one of the most common organisms. The in vitro antimicrobial activity of lemon juice, tomato juice,   aqueous extracts of mint leaves, coriander leaves and ginger were studied against Streptococcus mutans, Lactobacillus acidophilus, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Staphylococcus aureus which are associated with dental caries. The aqueous extracts of the selected plants exhibited antimicrobial activity against all the tested microorganisms. The largest mean zone of inhibition was obtained with fresh  lemon juice (28.66 mm) followed by the aqueous extracts of mint leaves (25.66 mm), ginger (22.00  mm), coriander leaves (14.66 mm) and tomato juice (10.33 mm). This study depicts that aqueous extracts of few vegetables can be used as a potential source of novel antimicrobial agents used to cure dental caries.

Keywords: Antimicrobial activity, dental caries, zone of inhibition.


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