Introduction: The Aloysia citriodora plant from the family of Verbenaceae has many uses in traditional medicine. The aim of the current study was to determine the effects of the aqueous and ethanolic extracts of A. citriodora on Streptococcus mutans and Streptococcus sobrinus, which cause tooth decay.

Methods: This 2016 study was performed on standardized strains of S. mutans PTCC1683 and S. sobrinus PTCC1601 and clinical isolates. Twenty clinical samples were obtained from the dental caries of children admitted to the pediatric ward at the Faculty of Dentistry of Babol University of Medical Sciences (Babol, Iran). The aqueous and ethanolic extracts of A.  citriodora leaves were prepared in several concentrations ranging from 625–20,000 µg/ml. These concentrations of the extracts were applied to the bacteria by disk diffusion, agar well diffusion, and macrotube dilution. The antibacterial effects of amoxicillin and chlorhexidine digluconate 0.2% (CHX) were also carried out. Data were analyzed by SPSS version 18 software using independent-samples t-test. 

Results: Streptococcus spp. was successfully isolated from nine out of 20 (45%) specimens. Of the 9 positive samples cultured, 8 (88.8%) were S. mutans and 1 was S. sobrinus (11.2%). No inhibitory zone was observed around the disks and wells containing all concentrations of A. citriodora extracts. The minimum concentrations for inhibition of growth (MIC) resulted in turbidity in all tubes and were negative except for the control tubes. Inhibition zones were observed for amoxicillin and CHX disks (p < 0.001).

Conclusion: This study found that all studied bacteria were resistant to both types of the extracts; therefore, they are not a suggested replacement for chemical agents in mouthwash. It also shown that CHX is less effective than amoxicillin.


Keywords: A. citriodora, Amoxicillin, Chlorhexidine digluconate (CHX), S. mutans, S. sobrinus
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