Applied Sciences > Medicine > C-169

Research Title Microbioassay Utilizing BACTEC 460TB/MGIT 960 System of Selected Plant Products Against Multi-Drug Resistant Strains of Mycobacterium tuberculosis
Research Personnel Leader:
Dr. Gerard L. Penecilla
Mr. Eugene C. Alicante
Research Duration Start:
4 January 2010
30 June 2012
Research Location West Visayas State University and St. Paul's Hospital
Research Description Multi-drug resistant TB is now a worldwide concern and pharmaceutical companies are struggling to develop new drugs against the deadly and uncontrollable health menace. We have to find means to determine if potential medicinal or natural products can be utilized rto help control MDR TB.
Research Objectives The project is a continuation of the current work on mycobacterial growth inhibition of selected medicinal plants in Iloilo specifically those plant species recently discovered with high antibacterial potential against resistant bacteria and now will be focused to determine anti-mycobacterial growth of resistant strains of Mycobacterium tuberculosis utilizing BACTEC 460 TB.
Research Beneficiary(ies) People suffering from the disease and pharmaceutical companies
Research Accoplishments The occurrence of multi-drug resistant (MDR) strains as well as extremely drug resistant (XDR) strain of Mycobacterium tuberculosis has prompted relentless efforts to discover new anti-tuberculosis drugs against this growing worldwide health problem. Medicinal plants, because of their secondary natural products are good sources of anti-mycobacterial agents, which have varied mechanisms of action. The present work was done to evaluate in vitro anti-mycobacterial activity of twenty-five (25) Philippine medicinal plants against MDR TB. Plant extracts were prepared by pounding and sequential extraction in hexane, acetone, ethanol (95%) and water. Anti-tuberculosis screening was carried out using BACTEC 460 TB and MGIT 960 System to determine the inhibitory activity at a certain concentration (IC) of the selected plant extracts/fractions with potential to treat MDR tuberculosis. Utilizing the radiometric BACTEC 460 TB System, the shoots and very young leaves of Eucalyptus globules, Mangifera indica, Polyalthia longifolia, Psidium guajava, and Terminalia catappa ethanol and acetone extracts showed the best activities at IC 100 µg/ml against a Rifampicin-INH resistant but streptomycin sensitive strain of Mycobacterium tuberculosis isolated from a volunteer patient at the Dr. Pablo O Torre Medical Hospital in Bacolod City, Philippines and at Saint Paul’s Hospital, Iloilo City, Philippines. The following plants (12 species) were also positive (sensitive) at 1000 µg/mL: Allium cepa (Bulb), Allium sativum (cloves), Artocarpus altilis (young leaves), Carmona retusa (leaves), Citrus aurantifolia (fruit peel), Citrus sinensis (fruit peel), Mallotus philippinensis (leaves) Nasturtium officinale (whole plant), Phylantus niruri (whole plant), Piper nigrum (seeds), Pteregospermum oleiferum (young leaves), and Zingeber officinale (Rhizome). However, utilizing the colorimetric Mycobacterium Growth Injection Tube (MGIT) 960 TB system, all the extracts/fractions (hexane/acetone/ethanol/dichloromethane/methanol) of the 17 potential plant species showed resistant (negative) activity at 50 µg/ml and 100 µg/mL against an MDR TB strain (Rifampicin and INH resistant) isolated from a volunteer patient at St. Paul’s Hospital, Iloilo City, Philippines. These data point to the importance of biological testing of extracts against drug-resistant M. tuberculosis isolates utilizing BACTEC 460 and MGIT 960. The bio-guided assay of these extracts for the identification of lead compounds against MDR-TB isolates will eventually lead to the utilization and standardization of medicinal plants. This is the first report of in-vitro high throughput screening of Philippine medicinal plants for anti-tuberculosis activity. However, more studies have to be done on the solubility of these secondary natural products in water and their pharmacological activities.
Total Research Cost ₱594,430
Research Agencies Funding:
West Visayas State University, Iloilo City
St. Paul's Hospital, Iloilo City
Research Budget Breakdown Year:
Year Funded:
Total Cost
Date Released
Amount Released

2010 to 2012


Code C-169
KRA Code Rapid, inclusive, and sustained economic growth
Priority Thrust DOST
Develop Appropriate Tchnologies to Create Growth in the Countryside
Poverty Reduction and Empowerment of the Poor
Sector Applied Sciences
Actual Sector Medical Sciences
Related sectors Drugs, Biotechnology
Entry revision: January 2021