Antifungal and antioxidant activities of Artemisia herba-alba Asso
Artemisia herba-alba Asso was used since ancient times as a painkiller of gynecological diseases and in the Moroccan folk medicine to treat chronic disease like diabetes, arterial hypertension. The genus of Artemisia was marked as a member of the family of Asteraceae. White wormwood was mentioned also on the list of the flora of Tell Atlas (Oran) subsector as an abundance species with 93 specimens. Chemical analysis of essential oils obtained from this plant by hydrodistillation, revealed the presence of different chemical species, contains santonin, lactones of sesquiterpenic acids. Flavonoids, coumarins, and tannins were found in extracts. In the most cases, there was no toxic effect observed on animals after receiving repeated or single doses of A. herba-alba Asso either in the form of extracts or essential oils. Essential oils, organic and aqueous extracts of the same plant have shown antioxidant properties against free radicals measured by DPPH, β-carotene-bleaching and metal chelating power tests. There is a great potency of this plant by interacting of its compounds with constituents of fungal cells; chitin, wall of cell, membrane ergosterol and eukaryotic nucleus, and by way of consequence disrupting their synthesis. It is well-known, that the hyphal growth of fungal pathogens was inhibited by sesquiterpenes lactones. This plant seemed potent in term of biological activities and can be used as potential alternative remedies for the treatment of many infectious and oxidative diseases.
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