Dacryodes edulis G. Don (Burseraceae) is a tropical African species
usually up to 8 and 18 m or sometimes reaching 45 m in height and producing
an edible fruit named Safou. The scars of bark exude a limpid resin which
becomes opaque while solidification and the resin spreads a strong odor.
The fruit can take various forms and sometimes reach 15 cm in length (Kengue,
Traditional healers in Nigeria and Cameroon use the plant to treat various
diseases such as body aches, cough, malaria (Ibe and Nwufo, 2005). In
Gabon, D. edulis is used as a remedy for dermatitis and tonsillitis
Aromatherapy is now considered to be another alternative way in healing
people and the therapeutic values of aromatic plants lie in their volatile
constituents such as monoterpenoids, sesquiterpenoids and phenolic compounds
that produce a definite physiological action on the human body (Bruneton,
To our literature survey, no study concerning the chemical composition
and pharmacological properties of the Gabon species essential oil has
been done before. The present research report results of volatile constituents,
antioxidant and antimicrobial activities of Dacryodes edulis with
the aim to contributing to the search for beneficial uses of this plant.
MATERIALS AND METHODS
Chemicals: DPPH (2, 2-diphenylpicrylhydrazyl) radical was obtained
from Fluka, BHT (Butylhydrazyltoluene) from Sigma, tetracycline and ticarcilline
(Bio-Rad Marnes-la coquette-France), fluconazole and griseofulvine (Bio-Rad-la
coquette, France), sodium sulphate and acetone from prolabo, ß-carotene,
linoleic acid, tween 80 from Merck, all the solvents were of analytic
Plant material: The resins of Dacryodes edulis were collected
in December 2006 from Sebang Herbarium of IPHAMETRA, Libreville, Gabon.
A voucher specimen has been identified and deposited at the Sebang Herbarium
of IPHAMETRA and at the Laboratoire Pluridisciplinaire des Sciences Ecole
Normale Superieure de Libreville, Gabon. The resins (500 g) were hydrodistillated
for 3 h using a Clevenger-type apparatus. The essential oil was dried,
after decantation, over anhydrous sodium sulphate.
Analysis: The resin oil was analyzed by GC and GC/MS. GC analyses
were performed on a Hewlett-Packard HP 6890 equipped with a split/splitless
injector (280EC), a split ratio 1:10, using a HP-5 capillary column (25
mx0.25 mm, film thickness 0.25 m). The oven temperature was programmed
from 50-300°C at a rate of 5°C min-1. Helium was used
as the carrier gas at a flow rate of 1.1 mL min-1. The injection
of each sample consisted of 1.0 L of oil diluted to 10% (v/v) with acetone.
GC/MS analyses were carried out on a Hewlett-Packard 5973/6890 system
operating in EI mode (70 eV) using two different columns: a fused silica
HP-5 MS capillary column (25 mx0.25 mm, film thickness 0.25 m) and a HP-Innowax
capillary column (60 mx0.25 mm, film thickness 0.25 m). The temperature
program for HP-5MS column was 50°C (5 min) rising to 300°C at
a rate of 5°C min and for the HP-Innowax column, 50-250°C at a
rate of 5°C min-1. Helium was use as the carrier gas at
a flow rate of 1.1 mL min-1. The oil components were identified
by comparison of their mass spectra and their retention indices with those
of reference compounds or with literature data (Adams, 2001; Joulain and
König, 1998; McLafferty and Stauffer, 1989; Van Den Dool and Kratz,
2, 2-diphenylpicrylhydrazyl (DPPH) assay: The free radical scavenging
activity of essential oil was determined according to the method described
by Burits and Bucar (2000).
ß-carotene-linoleic acid essay: The antioxidant ability of
the essential oil was determined according to the method previously described
by Dapkevicius et al. (1998).
Micro organisms: The reference microbial strains used were: Bacillus
cereus LMG 13569, Enterococcus faecalis CIP 103907, Escherichia
coli CIP 105182, Listeria innocua LMG 113568, Salmonella
enterica CIP 105150, Shigella dysenteria CIP 5451, Staphylococcus
aureus ATCC 9244, Proteus mirabolis 104588 CIP, Staphylococcus
camorum LMG 13567, Candida albicans ATCC 10231 and
Candida albicans ATCC 90028.
Clinical microbial strains: Enterococcus faecalis, Pseudomonas
aeruginosa, Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus pyogenes and C.
albicans. They were kindly provided by the St. Camille Hospital of
Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso.
Antimicrobial activity essay: A broth microdilution method was
used to determine the Minimum Inhibitory Concentration (MIC), the Minimum
Bactericidal Concentration (MBC) and the Minimum Fungicidal Concentration
(MFC) (Bassole et al., 2003). All tests were performed in Mueller-Hinton
Broth (Becton Dickinson, USA). A serial doubling dilution of each essential
oil was prepared in 96 wells plates over the range 0.03-8% (v/v). The
broth was supplemented with tween 80 at a concentration of 0.1% in order
to enhance essential oil solubility. The tween 80 was at a final concentration
of 0.001% (v/v).
Overnight broth cultures of each strain were prepared in Nutrient Broth
(Diagnostic Pasteur, France) and the final concentration in each well
was adjusted to 5x105 cfu mL-1 following inoculation.
The concentration of each inoculum was confirmed by viable count on Plate
Count Agar (Merck, Germany). Positive and negative growth controls were
included in every test. The tray was incubated aerobically at 30°C
(Gram-negative strains) or 37°C(Gram-positive strains) and MICs were
determined. MIC was recorded as lowest concentration of essential oil
demonstrating no visible growth in the broth. To determine MBC values,
10 µL-1 of bacterial suspension were removed from each
well and inoculated in Mueller-Hinton Agar for 24 h at 30 or 37°C.
MBC was defined as a lowest concentration of essential oil killing 99.9%
of bacterial inocula (Michel-Briand, 1986). All tests were performed in
Statistical analysis: Data were expressed as mean±SEM.
A one way variance was use to analyse data. p<0.01 represented significant
difference between means (Duncans multiple range test).
RESULTS AND DISCUSSION
Chemical analyses: The hydrodistillation of the resins of Dacryodes
edulis gave a mobile oil in 6.78% yield (w/w). The compounds identified
in the oil are shown in Table 1. A total of 29 components
were identified (98.52%). The oil contains exclusively monoterpenoids
with hydrocarbons (72.25%) being predominant. The oxygenated compounds
accounted for (25.11%) of the constituents of the oil. Among the hydrocarbons,
five monoterpenoids were dominant: a-pinene (17.47%), sabinene (21.76%),
p-cymene (11.29%), ?-terpinene (5.84%), limonene (5.72%).
||Chemical composition of the essential oil of Dacryodes
edulis G. Don
|RI: Retention Indices according to HP-5 column elution,
tr: Trace percentage<0.1%
||Minimum inhibitory concentration, minimum bactericidal
concentration data (%v/v) obtained by microdilution method.
|Each value represents mean of three different observations
oxygenated compounds (26.27%), four monoterpenoids were present, with
1,8-cineole (0.68%), cis-sabinene hydrate (1.08%), terpinen-4-ol (19.79%)
and a-terpineol (3.01%) as the major compounds. Finally, no phenolic
compound has been detected in this essential oil.
Antioxidant and DPPH free radical scavenging activities : The result
of DPPH free radical scavenging activity is shown in Fig. 1.
||Antioxidant activity by-ß-carotene bleaching test
of Dacryodes edulis essential oil
The essential oil obtained from resin exhibited a better scavenging effect at
100 µg mL-1, however it showed a weak scavenging activity in comparison
to the activity of a BHT 100 µg mL-1 concentration. In the case
of the linoleic acid system, the essential oil possessed a good antioxidant
capacity for preventing the linoleic acid per oxidation, but this effect was
significantly lower than that of BHT at 100 µg mL-1 (Fig.
2). The high antioxidant and DPPH radical scavenging activities of Dacryodes
edulis essential oil can be attributed to the presence of some major components
that have antioxidant activity: a-pinene, (Houghton, 2004) and terpinen-4-ol
(Lee and Shibamoto, 2001).
Antimicrobial activity: In this present study, MICs, MBCs and
MFCs varied from 1 to 16% for all micro organisms tested (Table
2). In order to elucidate the anti microbial effect, MBC/MIC ratios
were calculated. When the ratio value was lower than 1, essential oil
exhibited a bactericidal effect. The better MICs were observed
with Bacillus cereus LMG13569, Escherichia coli CIP NCTC11602,
Salmonella enterica CIP105150, Staphylococcus aureus ATCC9244,
Staphylococcus camorum LMG13567, Enterococcus faecalis. However,
in the most cases the MIC was equivalent to the MBC and indicated a bactericidal
action of the oil. The essential oil was bactericidal for Bacillus
cereus LMG13569, Escherichia coli CIP NCTC11602, Staphylococcus
aureus ATCC9244 and Enterococcus faecalis. The most resistant
strains with high MIC and MBC were Pseudomonas aeruginosa and
However, The essential oil possessed no antifungal action, Candida
albicans ATCC90028 was the most resistant. The antibacterial activity
of Dacryodes edulis may be attributed to the presence of the main
components in the resin essential oil: p-cymene, ?-terpinene (Sonboli
et al., 2005).
These data have provided a wealth information on the essential oil composition,
antioxidant and antibacterial activities of the Dacryodes edulis
G. Don resin. The essential oil is bactericidal for certain strains tested,
its antibacterial spectrum is middle and the oil possesses a good antioxidant
activity. Dacryodes edulis may help to prevent oxidative damage
in the human body, such as lipid peroxidation which is associated with
cancer, prematuring aging, atherosclerosis and diabetes. In other hand,
the essential oil of Dacryodes edulis may be use in meat and poultry
products to prevent or slow oxidative rancidity of fats that cause browning
and deterioration. These results show that the essential oil could be
used as a potential natural antioxidant and antibacterial agent.