Antimicrobial Efficacy of Azadirachta indica against Streptococcus mutans-An In vitro Study
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Dental caries is one of the most common chronic diseases among all age groups. The main bacterial agents in caries development are Streptococcus mutans. Reducing these microorganisms causes a significant decrease in dental caries. Plaque-induced caries is a local disease; therefore, local use of antimicrobial agents is more efficient than their systemic use. Streptococcus mutans is a Gram-positive, non-motile, non-spore forming, catalase negative, facultative anaerobic cocci bacterium commonly found in the human oral cavity, is a significant contributor to tooth decay. Azadirachta indica (neem) is known for its Indian medicinal value and demonstrated anti-inflammatory, immune-modulatory, antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral, antioxidant, and anti-carcinogenic properties. The aim of this study is to evaluate the Antimicrobial efficacy of neem extract against Streptococcus mutans.
Materials and methods
Neem leaf extract and 0.2% chlorhexidine was used to assess the antimicrobial efficiency. Agar well diffusion test was used to study the antimicrobial efficacy. Each well was loaded with 20, 40, 60, 80 and 100 μl of corresponding concentration of neem extract and calcium hydroxide was used. The plates were incubated for 24h at 37°C. The development of inhibition zone around the well was measured (diameter). The zone of inhibition was recorded, tabulated, and analyzed statistically with the help of IBM Statistical Package for the Social Sciences statistics version 20 using analysis of variance test.
Both neem extract and chlorhexidine showed well-defined and comparable zones of inhibition around their respective wells. Zone of inhibition of neem extract was significantly higher than chlorhexidine. Analysis of variance showed significant difference between zone diameters of neem leaf extract, and chlorhexidine against Streptococcus mutans (p < 0.05).
From the present study, it can be concluded that neem leaf extract shows significant difference in zones of inhibition when compared with chlorhexidine.
Neem extract, Antimicrobial activity, Inhibition zone, MIC, MBC.