ANTIMICROBIAL PROPERTIES OF A TRADITIONAL MEDICINAL PLANT MIMULUS AURANTIACUS
Jackson Womck, Keefah Khalil, Christine Case.
Skyline College, San Bruno, CA.
Within the last two decades, the rise in bacterial resistance to antibiotics has increased, sparking a search for novel solutions to infections. Mimulus aurantiacus (Sticky Monkey Flower) is used in traditional Miwok medicine to treat intestinal and skin infections. The aim of our work is to isolate and characterize the antimicrobial compound(s) in M. aurantiacus. M. aurantiacus leaves, roots, and flowers were ground and mixed separately in methanol, ethyl acetate, and water (400 mg/mL). These extracts were screened against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in agar diffusion assays. The methanolic leaf extract was most effective against MRSA producing an average zone of inhibition (3 mm) greater than methicillin (0 mm) and comparable to vancomycin (4 mm). The antimicrobial chemical does not cause bacterial lysis and does not appear to be a protein. We are currently determining the method of action of the methanolic leaf extract. From these experiments, we determined that the Sticky Monkey Flower leaves contain a potential antibiotic.