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American Journal of Applied Sciences
Year: 2009  |  Volume: 6  |  Issue: 6  |  Page No.: 1067 - 1069

Inhibitory Effect of Ginger Extract on Candida albicans

Zahra Atai, Manijeh Atapour and Maryam Mohseni    

Abstract: Problem statement:The fungal infections could be life-threatening in immunocompromised patients. Candida albicans is the most frequent fungi in the oral cavity. Approach: The first step for treatment could be done using topical antifungal agents. Nystatine is a choice for mentioned usage but there are some problems in its using including: unfavorite taste, frequency of usage, etc. Finding better replacements is the subject of many studies. Results: This study was carried out to find an alternative for Nystatine. The study was designed based on laboratory investigations to investigate the antifungal activity of zingiber offcinale (Ginger) on Candida albicans. Candida albicanse (PTCC 5027, ATCC10231) was obtained from Iranian microbial collection and was confirmed by Germ Tube formation test. Ethanolic ginger extract was prepared. The antifungal activity of the extract was determined using Agar dilution and disc diffusion techniques. Data were analyzed by ANOVA test. Conclusion/Recommendations:The results showed that the ethanolic extract was effective on Candida albicans (2 mg mL-1) at the concentration of 1:5. The study indicates that ginger extract might have promise in treatment of oral candidiasis.

Fig. 1).

There was significant difference between the extract and Nystatin in their inhibition activity in comparison with Candida albicanse (p<0.01). Minimum Inhibitory Concentration (MIC) of the ginger extract was obtained for the concentration at 2 mg mL-1 (1:5 dilution).

Fig. 1: Inhibitory zone in comparison with dilution


Members of the Zingiberaceae family are important in traditional medicine for the treatment of many diseases such as inflammation, morning sickness in pregnancy and many infective diseases. Significant antifungal activities were evident with extracts from members of the Zingiberaceae[16-18]. This study showed that the extract of rhizomes of Z.officinale has pronounced inhibitory activities against Candida albicans. This result is comparable with other studies[5,9,10,12] suggesting that different antifungal agents are present in the Ginger extract. In the ginger rhizome there are several components which have antibacterial and anti fungal effects. The gingerol and shagelol identified as more active agents[13].

Ginger extract containing Gingerol inhibits the growth of many bacteria and fungi in vitro and the activity might be contributed to the preventive effects of its different agents[13,18-21].

Recent studies have focused on the effect of Ginger on the oral bacteria and fungi. Park et al. showed that crude extract of the ginger can inhibit the growth of oral bacteria in vitro[23] which is in good agreement with our results.


Antifungal activity of the ginger extract has been reported before[1-13]. Our study focused on the effect of ginger extract on the oral species of Candida (Albicans) and showed the significant anticandidal effect the extract. Although species belonging to the Zingiberaceae family are generally regarded safe for human consumption[22], further bio-assay guided analysis and clinical trial studies are required to approve it as an anti fungal agent for oral species. Our results suggest the ginger components as promising candidates for development of antifungal agents for topical applications.


The researchers would like to thank the Kerman University of Medical Sciences (vice chancellor for research) for sponsorship of the field research (Grant number: 83/53).

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