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Ethnomedicinal plants of Assam, India as an Alternative source of future Medicine for Treatment of Pneumonia

Author Affiliations

  • 1Department of Biotechnology, Gauhati University, Guwahati-781014, Assam, INDIA

Int. Res. J. Biological Sci., Volume 3, Issue (10), Pages 76-82, October,10 (2014)


In Assam there are several plants used in folk medicine for treatment of pneumonia but for integration of these ethnomedicine into modern medicine system there must be scientific proof for the bioactivity of these traditionally used plants. The present work was conducted to asses antibacterial activity of selected ethnomedicinal plant species used traditionally for pneumonia treatment in Assam. Eighty plant extracts (prepared with solvents with increasing polarity) from 20 plants belonging to 17 families were screened for their antibacterial activity using disc diffusion method against two Gram positive (Staphylococcus aureus [MTCC96] , Streptococcus pneumoniae [MTCC655]) and two Gram negative ( E.coli [MTCC443] and Pseudomonas aeruginosa [MTCC424]) bacteria. Out of the twenty plants screened fourteen plants showed varying degree of antibacterial activity against at least one human pathogen tested. Chloroform extract of Mucuna pruriens and petroleum ether extract of Xanthium strumanium showed strong antibacterial activity with higher zone of inhibition than the control viz. chloramphenicol against S. pneumoniae (15.33mm) and S. aureus (15mm) respectively. The present study provides scientific evidence for the use of majority of the studied medicinal plants including Mucuna pruriens and Xanthium strumanium in traditional medicine and these could serve a potential source of alternative antibacterial drugs in future.


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