Bacteriostatic activity of some Australian essential oils

Australia possesses extraordinary vegetal resources which can offer extracts, essential oils, or other compounds for cosmetic preparations.

We shall describe work undertaken with Australian essential oils, supplied to us by the Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences in Syndey. This work was part of an exhaustive study on more than a hundred essential oils to determine which essential oils would show an interesting bacteriostatic activity. From these studies we have selected 10 essential oils as the subject of this article.

Melaleuca Alternifolia grows on the north coast of N.S.W. This is a leaf oil commonly known as "Tea-Tree" oil. The yield from the leaves is between 2% and 3%. Its major constituents are 1-terpinen-4-ol and terpinene, 30% to 40% and 1,8-cineole and p-cymene, less than 5%.

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