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Keywords:

  • Antibacterial activity;
  • ginseng stems–leaves;
  • phenolics;
  • subcritical water extraction

Summary

Antibacterial activities of ginseng extracts produced from ginseng by-products, stems and leaves, using subcritical water extraction (SWE) at 110, 165 and 190 °C, were evaluated and compared with those of ginseng extracts prepared by hot water and ethanol extraction. The ginseng stems–leaves extract produced by SWE at 190 °C contained the greatest concentration of phenolics (98.4 mg GAE g−1 of extract). All ginseng extracts inhibited the growth of Bacillus cereus, Salmonella enteritidis, Escherichia coli O157:H7 and Listeria monocytogenes. Among four strains, B. cereus was more sensitive to the ginseng extract by SWE at 190 °C than other bacteria. Cell membranes of bacteria were disrupted by the addition of SWE ginseng extract, observed by transmission electron microscopy (TEM), with the release of cellular contents. These findings provided evidence about the potential utilisation of ginseng stems and leaves by using an environmental friendly extraction process, SWE, to produce ginseng extract for the inhibition of bacteria growth.