ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Antifungal activity of essential oils on Aspergillus parasiticus isolated from peanuts
 
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1
Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, Kennesaw State University, Kennesaw, GA 30144, USA
2
Department of Studies in Microbiology, University of Mysore, Mysore-570006, Karnataka, India
CORRESPONDING AUTHOR
Premila N. Achar
Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, Kennesaw State University, Kennesaw, GA 30144, USA
Submission date: 2015-09-23
Acceptance date: 2016-04-22
 
Journal of Plant Protection Research 2016;56(2):139–142
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ABSTRACT
Aspergillus parasiticus is one of the most common fungi which contaminates peanuts by destroying peanut shells before they are harvested and the fungus produces aflatoxins. The aim of this study was to evaluate the antifungal activities of seventeen essential oils on the growth of the aflatoxigenic form of A. parasiticus in contaminated peanuts from commercial outlets in Georgia. The agar dilution method was used to test the antifungal activity of essential oils against this form of A. parasiticus at various concentrations: 500; 1,000; 1,500; 2,000; 2,500 ppm. Among the seventeen essential oils tested, the antifungal effect of cinnamon, lemongrass, clove and thyme resulted in complete inhibition of mycelial growth. Cinnamon oil inhibited mycelial growth at ≥ 1,000 ppm, lemongrass and clove oils at ≥ 1,500 ppm and thyme at 2,500 ppm. However, cedar wood, citronella, cumin and peppermint oils showed partial inhibition of mycelial growth. Eucalyptus oil, on the other hand, had less antifungal properties against growth of A. parasiticus, irrespective of its concentration. Our results indicate that the aflatoxigenic form of A. parasiticus is sensitive to selected essential oils, especially cinnamon. These findings clearly indicate that essential oils may find a practical application in controlling the growth of A. parasiticus in stored peanuts.
CONFLICT OF INTEREST
The authors have declared that no conflict of interests exist.
 
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