A comparative study of the physicochemical properties and antimicrobial qualities of Abuad moringa soap with conventional medicated soaps
Keywords:antibacterial, antifungal, moringa soap, skin infections
The study was aimed at assessing the physicochemical properties and antimicrobial qualities of 'ABUAD moringa soap', a herbal soap produced with Moringa oleifera leaf by 'ABUAD Farm', Afe Babalola University, Ado Ekiti, Nigeria. The physicochemical properties and antimicrobial qualities of ABUAD moringa soap on some selected bacteria and fungi were evaluated and compared with those of some conventional medicated and herbal soaps commonly used in Nigeria, such as Dettol, Tetmosol, Tura, Septol, Delta and Dudu Osun (herbal), as well as Lux, which serves as a control soap. The results of the physicochemical analyses revealed that all the soaps fall within the pH range of 8.83 and 9.83. All the soaps possess low values of free caustic alkali and detectable free fatty acid, as well as moderate values of total fatty matter. In-vitro antibacterial and antifungal activities of the soaps were investigated against microbial agents commonly found in association with skin infections, using the well-agar diffusion technique. The bacteria tested were Staphylococcus aureus ATCC 25923 and Proteus mirabilis (ATCC 12453), as well as four clinical isolates namely, Escherichia coli, Leutococcus sanguinis, Corynebacterium accolens and Burkholderia cepacia. The fungi were Candida albicans ATCC 10231, Malassezia furfur ATCC 44349, and Cryptococcus neoformans ATCC 23645. All the soaps, with exeption of lux, produced varied degrees of antibacterial activities, but ABUAD Moringa soap and Dudu Osun indicated superior effectiveness against the bacteria tested. Antifugal activities were produced by ABUAD moringa and Dudu Osun soaps only, on the fungi tested. ABUAD Moringa produced significantly higher antifungal activities on Malassezia furfur ATCC 44349 and Candida albicans ATCC 10231 than Dudu Osun, but no significant difference was observed between the two soaps on their activities against Cryptococcus neoformans ATCC 23645. The study showed that ABUAD Moringa soap possesses high therapeutic potentials against agents of bacterial and fungal skin infections.
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