2019 Volume 24, Issue 22, p4053
This study aims to investigate the effect of essential oils extracted from wood residues of Picea abies on the growth of Escherichia coli. The essential oils were extracted by supercritical carbon dioxide, leading to a yield of 3.4 ± 0.5% (w/w) in 120 min. The antimicrobial effect was tested at 37 °C by isothermal calorimetry. The heat-flow (dq/dt vs. time) was integrated to give a fractional reaction curve (α vs. time). Such curves were fitted by a modified Gompertz function to give the lag-time (λ) and the maximum growth rate (µmax) parameters. The results showed that λ was linearly correlated with E. coli concentration (λ = 1.4 h/log (CFU/mL), R2 = 0.997), whereas µmax was invariant. Moreover, the overall heat was nearly constant to all the dilutions of E. coli. Instead, when the essential oil was added (with concentrations ranging from 1 to 5 mg/L) to a culture of E. coli (104 CFU/mL), the lag-time increased from 14.1 to 33.7 h, and the overall heat decreased from 2120 to 2.37 J. The results obtained by the plate count technique were linear with the lag-time (λ), where (λ = −7.3 × log (CFU/mL) + 38.3, R2 = 0.9878). This suggested a lower capacity of E. coli to metabolize the substrate in the presence of the essential oils. The results obtained in this study promote the use of essential oils from wood residues and their use as antimicrobial products.
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