Chu Thi Thu Ha, Tran Huy Thai, Le Ngoc Diep, Trinh Xuan Thanh, Dinh Thi Thu Thuy, Nguyen Thanh Tra, Nguyen Thi Thu Ha


The chemical composition of the essential oils obtained by hydrodistillation of the stems and leaves of Michelia alba D.C. growing wild in North Vietnam was analyzed by GC/MS. In total, 28 compounds were characterized in both stem and leaf oils, accounting for 99.33% and 99.54% of the oils, respectively. Linalool was the major component of both oils (80.65% and 72.89%, respectively), and the same presence with various amounts of other 22 compounds constituents except 1,10-di-epi-cubenol in stem oil; and borneol (=endo-borneol), α-copaene, α-selinene and ethyl 2-phenylhexanoate in leaf oil. In the stem oil, (Z)-β-ocimene 1.94%; (E)-β-ocimene 2.28%; β-caryophyllene 1.26%; (E)-nerolidol 1.15%; caryophyllene oxide 2.26% and epi-α-muurolol (=T-muurolol) 1.80% were present in sizeable amount. The most abundant minor components of the leaf oil were (Z)-β-ocimene 1.73%; (E)-β-ocimene 2.28%; Cis- β-elemene 3.03%; β-caryophyllene 4.04%; α-humulene 1.44%; (E)-nerolidol 4.42% and caryophyllene oxide 1.36%. The essential oil samples were tested against a Gram positive bacteria strain Staphylococcus aureus, a Gram negative bacteria strain Escherichia coli, and a yeast strain Candida albican using the agar disk diffusion method. The antimicrobial activity of leaf oil was stronger than that of stem oil, and both of oils exhibited a significant inhibitory activity against all three test microorganism strains with the inhibitory zone diameters from 15 to 46 mm.


Magnoliaceae, Michelia alba, essential oil composition, stem oil, leaf oil, antimicrobial activity


Balouiri M., Sadiki M., Ibnsouda S. K., 2016. Methods for in vitro evaluating antimicrobial activity: A review. Journal of Pharmaceutical Analysis, 6(2): 71-79.

Bauer, A. W., Kirby, W. M. M., Sheriss, J. C., Turck, M., 1966. Antibiotic susceptibility testing by standardised single method. American Journal of clinical Pathology, 45: 493–496.

Do N. D., Dau B. T., Tran D. T., Olayiwola T. O. and Ogunwande I. A., 2016. Composition of Essential Oils from the Leaf and Stem Bark of Michelia foveolata. Journal of Scientific Research & Reports, 10(6): 1-6.

Do N. D., Tran D. T. & Ogunwande I. A., 2016. Essential Oil Composition of Four Magnoliaceae Species Cultivated in Vietnam. Journal of Herbs, Spices & Medicinal Plants, 22(3): 279-287,

Genderen van M. H. P., Leclercq P. A., Delgado H. S., Kanjilal P. B., Singh R. S., 1999. Compositional analysis of the leaf oils of Piper callosum Ruiz & Pav. from Peru and Michelia montana Blume from India. Spectroscopy, 14: 51–59.

Huang, X. Z., Yin, Y., Huang, R., Chen, M. H., Ge, P. G., Ma, Z. J., & Gui, H., 2009. Study on chemical constituents of essential oils from leaves and stems of Michelia alba DC. Food Science, 8(30): 241-244.

Jorgensen J. H., Ferraro M. J., 2009. Antimicrobial Susceptibility Testing: A Review of Ggeneral Principles and Contemporary Practices. Clinical Infectious Diseases, 49: 1749–1755,

Lesueur D., Serra D. de R., Bighelli A., Tran M. H., Ninh K. B., Tran H. T. and Casanova J., 2007. Chemical composition and antibacterial activity of the essential oil of Michelia foveolata Merryll ex Dandy from Vietnam. Flavour and Fragrance Journal, 22: 317–321,

Li Z., Li X., 2000. Study of chemical constituents of essential oil from Michelia yunnanensis Franch. Zhong Yao Cai, 23: 685–687.

Marino M., Bersani C., Comi G., 2001. Impedance measurements to study the antimicrobial activity of essential oils from Lamiaceae and Compositae. International Journal of Food Microbiology, 67:187–195.

Mothana R.A.A. and Lindequist U., 2005. Antimicrobial activity of some medicinal plants of the island Soqotra. Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 96: 177-181,

New directions aromatics, 2018. Essential oil of Michelia alba. [accessed 25/9/2018].

Ngo X. L., Dau B. T., 2017. Chemical composition of essential oils of the flower of Michelia alba DC. in Ben En national park, Thanh Hoa province. Proceedings of the 7th National Scientific Conference on Ecology and Biological Resources, 1322-1324.

Nguyen A. D., Tran D. T., Nguyen X. D., 2005. Chemical composition of the leaf oil of Michelia balansae (ADC) Dandy from Vietnam. J Essent Oil Bear Plants, 8(1):11-14.

Pensuk W., Padumanonda T., Pichaensoonthon C., 2007. Comparison of the Chemical Constituents in Michelia alba Flower Oil Extracted by Steam Distillation, Hexane Extraction and Enfleurage Method. Journal of Thai Traditional & Alternative Medicine 5(1) January-April 2007.

Philip K., Malek S. N. A., Sani W., Shin S. K., Kumar S., Lai H. S., Serm L. G., and Rahman S. N. S. A., 2009. Antimicrobial Activity of Some Medicinal Plants from Malaysia, American Journal of Applied Sciences, 6 (8): 1613-1617.

Punjee P., Dilokkunanant U., Sukkatta U., Vajrodaya S., Haruethaitanasan V., Pitpiangchan P. and Rakthaworn P., 2009. Scented Extracts and Essential Oil Extraction from Michelia alba D.C. Kasetsart J. (Nat. Sci.), 43:197 – 203.

Qin D. Q., Huang R. L., Li Z. H., Wang S. Y., Cheng D. M., Zhang Z. X., 2018. Volatile Component Analysis of Michelia alba Leaves and Their Effect on Fumigation Activity and Worker Behavior of Solenopsis invicta. Sociobiology, 65(2): 170-176,

Sanimah S., Suri R., Nor Azizun R., Hazniza A., Radzali M., Rusli I. and Hassan M.D., 2008. Volatile compounds of essential oil from different stages of Michelia alba (cempaka putih) flower development. J. Trop. Agric. and Fd. Sc., 36(1): 109–119.

Shang C., Hu Y., Deng C., Hu K., 2002. Rapid determination of volatile constituents of Michelia alba flowers by gas chromatography–mass spectrometry with solid-phase microextraction. Journal of Chromatography A, 942: 283–288.

Skoula, M., Abidi, C. and Kokkalon, E., 1996. Essential oil variation of Lavandula stoechas L. ssp stoeches growing wild in Crete (Greece). Biochem. Syst. Ecol., 24: 255–260.

Skoula, M., El Hillali, I. and Makris, A. M., 1999. Evaluation of the genetic diversity of Salvia fruticosa Mill, clones using RAPD markers and comparison with the essential oil profiles. Biochem. Syst. Ecol., 27: 559–568,

Songsamoe S., Matan N., Matan N., 2017. Antifungal activity of Michelia alba oil in the vapor phase and the synergistic effect of major essential oil components against Aspergillus flavus on brown rice. Food Control, 77: 150-157.

Ueyama Y., Hashimoto S., Nii H. & Furukawa K., 1992. The Chemical Composition of the Flower Oil and the Leaf Oil of Michelia alba D.C., Journal of Essential Oil Research, 4(1): 15-23,

Vo V. C., 2004. Common botanical dictionary, Vol.2. Publishing House for Science and Technology, pp. 1650-1652.

Yu, J. C., Jiang, T. Z., Li, R. and Chan, S. M., 2003. Chemical composition of the essential oils of Brassica juncea (L.) Coss. Grown in different regions, Hebei, Shaanxi and Shandong, of China. Journal of Food and Drug Analysis, 11: 22–26.

Zhong, R. M., Zhang Z. M., Xiao Z. J., Zeng Q. X., Wang Y. M., 2006. Chemical composition and antioxidant activities of the essential oils of five Magnoliaceae species from South China. Acta Botanica Yunnanica, 28(3):208-214.


Published by Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology