Influence of essential oils on the growth of aspergillus flavus


  • Denisa Foltinová Slovak University of Agriculture in Nitra, Faculty of Biotechnology and Food Sciences, Department of Microbiology, Tr. A. Hlinku 2, 949 76 Nitra
  • Dana Tančinová Slovak University of Agriculture in Nitra, Faculty of Biotechnology and Food Sciences, Department of Microbiology, Tr. A. Hlinku 2, 949 76 Nitra
  • Miroslava Cí­sarová Slovak University of Agriculture in Nitra, Faculty of Biotechnology and Food Sciences, Department of Microbiology, Tr. A. Hlinku 2, 949 76 Nitra



essential oils, inhibitory efect, Aspergillus flavus, mycotoxins


This paper was focused on the determination of the inhibitory effect of selected essential oils on growth of ten isolates of Aspergillus flavus and their potential ability to produce mycotoxins in vitro by TLC method. The isolates were obtained from moldy bread of domestic origin. We followed the impact of five essential oils at 100% concentration - lemon, eucalyptus, oregano, sage and thyme. The effect of the essential oils we tested the gaseous diffusion method. We isolates grown on CYA (Czapek yeast extract agar), in the dark at 25 ±1 °C, 14 days. The diameter of colonies grown we continuously measured on the 3rd, 7th, 11th, and 14th day of cultivation. The results of the paper suggest that oregano and thyme essential oil had 100% inhibited the growth of all tested isolates of Aspergillus flavus. Lemon, eucalyptus and sage essential oil had not significant inhibitory effects on tested isolates Aspergillus flavus, but affected the growth of colonies throughout the cultivation. In addition to the inhibitory effect we witnessed the stimulative effect of lemon, eucalyptus and sage essential oil to some isolates. Together with the antifungal effect of essential oils, we monitored the ability of Aspergillus flavus isolates to produce mycotoxins - aflatoxin B1 (AFB1) and cyclopiazonic acid (CPA) in the presence of essential oils. Production mycotoxins we have seen in the last (14th) day of cultivation. Lemon and eucalyptus essential oil did not affect the production of mycotoxins. In the case of sage essential oil we were recorded cyclopiazonic acid production in three of the ten isolates from the all three repetitions, while neither isolate did not produced aflatoxin B1. The production of secondary metabolites was detected in all control samples. From the results we can say that oregano and thyme essential oil could be used as a natural preservative useful in the food industry.


Download data is not yet available.


Metrics Loading ...


Abdel-Wahhab, M. A., Hassan, N. S., El-Kady, A. A., Khadrawy, Y. A. 2010. Red ginseng extract protects against aflatoxin B1 and fumonisins-induced hepatic pre-cancerous lesions in rats. Food and Chemical Toxicology, vol. 48, no. 2, p. 733-742. DOI:

Abu-Darwish, M. S., Cabral, C., Ferreira, I. V., Goncalves, M. J., Cavaleiro, C. 2013. Essential Oil of Common Sage (Salvia officinalis L.) from Jordan: Assessment of Safety in Mammalian Cells and Its Antifungal and Anti-Inflammatory Potential. BioMed Research International, vol. 100, no. 2. DOI:

Baratta, M., Dorman, H. J., Deans, S. G., Figueiredo, C. 2008. Antimicrobial and antioxidant properties of some commercial essential oils. Flavour and Fragrance Journal, vol. 13, no. 4, p. 235-244.<235::AID-FFJ733>3.0.CO;2-T DOI:<235::AID-FFJ733>3.0.CO;2-T

Carmo, E. S., Oliveira-Lima, E., Leite De Souza, E. 2008. The potential of Origanum vulgare L. (Lamiaceae) essential oil in inhibiting the growth of some food-related Aspergillus species. Brazilian Journal of Microbiology, vol. 39, no. 2, p. 362-367. DOI:

Centeno, S., Calvo, M. A., Adelantado, C., Figueroa, S. 2010. Antifungal activity of extracts of Rosmarinus officinalis and Thymus vulgaris against Aspergillus flavus and Aspergillus ochraceus. Pakistan journal of biological sciences, vol. 13, no. 9, p. 452-455. PMid:20973400 DOI:

Císarová, M., Tančinová, D., Medo, J. 2016. Antifungal activity of lemon, eucalyptus, thyme, oregano, sage and lavender essential oils against Aspergillus niger and Aspergillus tubingensis isolated from grapes. Potravinarstvo, vol. 10, no. 1, p. 83-88. DOI:

Dantigny, P., Guilmart, A., Radoi, F., Bensoussan, M., Zwietering, M. 2005. Modelling the effect of ethanol on growth rate of food spoilage moulds. International Journal of Food Microbiology, vol. 98, no. 3, p. 261-269. DOI:

Elgayyar, M., Draughon, F. A., Golden, D. A., Mount, J. R. 2001. Antimicrobial activity of essential oils from plants against selected pathogenic and saprophytic microorganisms. Journal of Food Protection, vol. 64, no. 7, p. 1019-1024. PMid:11456186 DOI:

Farzaneh, M., Kiani, H., Sharifi, R., Reisi, M., Hadian, J. 2015. Chemical composition and antifungal effects of three species of Satureja (S. hortensis, S. spicigera, and S. khuzistanica) essential oils on the main pathogens of strawberry fruit. Postharvest Biology and Technology, vol. 109, p. 145-151. DOI:

Foltinova, D. 2016. Vplyv esenciálnych olejov na rast Aspergillus flavus (The effect of essential oils on the growth of Aspergillus flavus) : diploma thesis. Nitra : SPU. 75 p.

Guynot, M. E., Ramos, A. J., Setó, L., Purroy, P., Sanchis, V., Marín, S. 2003. Antifungal activity of volatile compounds generated by essential oils against fungi commonly causing deterioration of bakery products. Journal of Applied Microbiology, vol. 94, no. 5, p. 893-899. DOI:

Hyldgaard, M., Mygind, T., Meyer, R. L. 2012. Essential oils in food preservation: Mode of action, synergies, and interactions with food matrix components. Frontiers in Microbiology, vol. 3, no. 12, p. 1-24. DOI:

Klich, A. M. 2002. Identification of common Aspergillus species. The Netherlands: Centraalbureau voor Schimelcultures. p. 116. ISBN 90-70351-6-3. DOI:

Kumar, R., Mishra, A. K., Dubey, N. K., Tripathi, Y. B. 2007. Evaluation of Chenopodium ambrosioides oil as a potential source of antifungal, antiaflatoxigenic and antioxidant aktivity. International Journal of Food Microbiology, vol. 115, no. 2, p. 159-164. DOI:

Labuda, R., Tančinová, D. 2006. Mykotická kontaminácia vybraných surovín rastlinného pôvodu. In Bojňanská, T. et al. Výživná a technologická kvalita rastlinných produktov a ich potravinárske využitie (Nutritional and technological quality of plant products and their use in food industry). Nitra : SPU Nitra, p. 167-194. ISBN 80-8069-780-9.

Leslie, J. F., Bandyopadhyay, R., Visconti, A. 2008. Mycotoxins: Detection Methods, Management, Public Health and Agricultural Trade. UK : CAB International. 476 p. ISBN 13-978-1-84593-082-0.

Mekonnen, A., Yitayew, B., Tesema, A., Taddese, S. 2016. In Vitro Antimicrobial Activity of Essential Oil of Thymus schimperi, Matricaria chamomilla, Eucalyptus globulus, and Rosmarinus officinalis. International Journal of Microbiology, vol. 2016, no. 1, p. 8. DOI:

Pardo, E., Marín, S., Ramos, A., Sanchis, V. 2006. Ecophysiology of ochratoxigenic Aspergillus ochraceus and Penicillium verrucosum isolates. Predictive models for fungal spoilage prevention a review. Food Additives and Contaminants: Part A, vol. 23, no. 4, p. 398-410. DOI:

Pitt, J. I. 1985. Nomenclatorial and taxonomic problems in the genus Eurotium. Advances in Penicillium and Aspergillus systematics. New York and London : Plenum Press. p. 383-396. ISBN 03-0642-222-0. DOI:

Pitt, J. I., Hocking, A. D. 1997. Fungi end food spoilage. 2nd ed. London : Cambridge Blackie Academic and Profesional, 593 p. ISBN 0-8342-1306-0.

Razzaghi-Abyaneh, M., Shams-Ghahfarokhi, M., Rezaee, M. B., Jaimand, K., Alinezhad, S., Saberi, R. 2009. Chemical composition and antiaflatoxigenic activity of Carum carvi L., Thymus vulgaris and Citrus aurantifolia essential oils. Food Control, vol. 20, no. 11, p. 1018-1024. DOI:

Samson, R. A., Frisvad, J. C. 2004. Penicillium subgenus Penicillium : new taxonomic schemes and mycotoxins and other extrolites. Utrecht : Centraalbureau voor Schimmelcultures. 260 p. ISBN 90-70351-53-6.

Samson, R. A., Hoekstra, E. S., Frisvad, J. C., Filtenborg, O. 2002. Introduction to Food and Airborne Fungi. 6th revised ed. Urecht : Centraalbureau voor Schimmelcultures, p. 283-297. ISBN 90-70351-42-0. DOI:

Sharma, N., Tripathi, A. 2008. Effects of Citrus sinensis (L.) Osbeck epicarp essential oil on growth and morphogenesis of Aspergillus niger (L.) Van Tieghem. Microbiological Research, vol. 163, no. 3, p. 337-344. DOI:

Tančinová, D., Mašková, Z., Felšöciová, S., Dovičičová, M., Barboráková, Z. 2012. Úvod do potravinárskej mykológie (Introduction to food mycology). Nitra : SPU. 292 p. ISBN 978-80-552-0753-7.

Tripathi, P., Dubey, N. K. 2004. Exploitation of natural products as an alternative strategy to control postharvest fungal rotting of fruit and vegetables. Postharvest Biology and Technology, vol. 32, no. 3, p. 235-245. DOI:

Varga, J., Frisvad, J. C., Samson, R. A. 2007. Polyphasic taxonomy of Aspergillus section Candidi based on molekular, morphological and physiological data. Studies in Mycology, vol. 59, p. 75-88. DOI:

Yamamoto-Ribeiro M. M. G., Grespan, R., Kohiyama, C. Y., Ferreira, F. D., Mossini, S. A. G. 2013. Effect of Zingiber officinale essential oil on Fusarium verticillioides and fumonisin production. Food Chemistry, vol. 141, no. 3, p. 3147-3152. DOI:




How to Cite

Foltinová, D. ., Tančinová, D. ., & Cí­sarová, M. . (2017). Influence of essential oils on the growth of aspergillus flavus. Potravinarstvo Slovak Journal of Food Sciences, 11(1), 322–331.

Most read articles by the same author(s)

1 2 > >>