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Spices have been used by Indians from thousands of years. Myristica fragrans is one the important spice belonging to the family Myristicaceae. It has been cultivated throughout the world and used for food flavoring, essential oil application and in traditional medicines. The seed of Myristica fragrans is the source of nutmeg. Nutmeg has been used as an aphrodisiac, anti-rheumatoid, anti-malarial, stimulant, and post childbirth tonic.
In the present investigation an effort has been made to evaluate the in-vitro antibacterial activity and phytochemical analysis of different extracts (aqueous, methanol and acetone) of M. fragrans. The results of phytochemical analysis clearly indicated that alkaloids, saponins, tannins, carbohydrates and proteins were almost present in all the three extracts, while flavonoids, phenols and terpenoids were limited to only methanolic and acetone extract and were absent in aqueous extract. The antibacterial activities of all the three extracts were analyzed against two gram positive bacterial strains (Staphylococcus aureus and Bacillus subtilis) and two gram negative bacterial strains (Escherichia coli and Salmonella typhi) procured from IMTech Chandigarh. Result of antibiogram has revealed that methanolic extract showed maximum and significant zone of inhibition followed by acetone and aqueous extract. Nutmeg oil was obtained by using Clevenger apparatus and its antibacterial activity was also performed against two gram positive bacterial strains (Staphylococcus aureus and Bacillus subtilis) and two gram negative bacterial strains (Escherichia coli and Salmonella typhi). The results clearly mentioned that the nutmeg oil has significant antibacterial activity against all the four pathogenic bacterial strains.
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