• essential oil;
  • Myristica fragrans;
  • Morinda citrifolia;
  • antioxidant activity;
  • cytotoxic activity


BACKGROUND: In this study the chemical composition, antioxidant activities and cytotoxic effect of the essential oils of Myristica fragrans (nutmeg) and Morinda citrifolia (mengkudu) were determined.

RESULTS: Thirty-eight compounds in nutmeg oil and six compounds in mengkudu oil were identified by gas chromatography–mass spectrometry. The free radical scavenging activity of nutmeg oil was superior of that mengkudu oil. The MTT assay of nutmeg oil on human colorectal carcinoma (HCT-116) and human breast carcinoma (MCF-7) cell lines showed IC50 values of 78.61 and 66.45 µg mL−1, respectively. The mengkudu oil exhibited IC50 values of 91.46 and 78.15 µg mL−1 for HCT-116 and MCF-7, respectively.

CONCLUSION: The results showed that nutmeg oil can be developed as potent anti-cancer and antioxidant drugs. Copyright © 2011 Society of Chemical Industry