Ethnobotanical study and antibacterial activity of a medicinal plant: Marrubium vulgare L (The White horehound)


  • Leila Zade Adimi University of Ferhat Abbas, Setif1, Algeria
  • Djihad Guittoum
  • Safia Hamimid



Marrubium vulgare L, Essential oil, Ethnobotanical study, Antibacterial activity, Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli.


Marrubium vulgare L, commonly known as white horehound, is widely used in traditional medicine in Bordj Bou Arreridj, Algeria. This ethnobotanical study aimed to evaluate the knowledge, usage, and therapeutic effects of white horehound in the study area. A total of 82% of the respondents reported using white horehound for various pathologies, with febrifuge being the most common (39.02%). The study revealed that individuals over 60 years of age (30%) had greater knowledge of medicinal plants than other age groups, and women (54%) had more knowledge about medicinal species than men. Illiterate people (50%) were found to be the majority of users of white horehound. The leaves of the plant were the most commonly used part (58.53%), and herbal tea was the most common method of preparation (73.17%). In addition to respiratory disorders, white horehound was also used for digestive disorders, such as vomiting, abdominal bloating, intestinal parasites, and diarrhea. Marrubium vulgare L belongs to the Lamiaceae family and is rich in essential oils with antibacterial activity. The essential oils of white horehound were extracted using hydrodistillation and Soxhlet methods, and their antibacterial activity was evaluated against two bacterial strains, Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus. Aromatogram was found to be the most effective method, and the results showed significant inhibition zones with 24mm for S.aureus and 17mm for E.coli. This study provides valuable insights into the traditional use and therapeutic potential of white horehound in Bordj Bou Arreridj, Algeria. The antibacterial activity of the essential oils of white horehound against E.coli and S.aureus supports its traditional use in treating infectious diseases. These findings could help in the development of new natural products with potential medicinal properties.






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