ISSN 0972-5407 83
Journal of Research & Development, Vol. 11 (2011)
Essential Oil Composition of Thymus Vulgaris L. and their Uses
The composition of the essential oil from the Thymus vulgaris L. type growing wild in northern Italy were identified by GC/MS .
Identified were thirty components, the main essential oils are as follows:- thymol, γterpinene, ρ-cymene, linalool, myrcene, α-pinene, eugenol, carvacrol and α -thujene.
Among these twelve aroma constituents of thyme were examined for their antioxidant activities using the aldehyde/carboxylic assay.
Eugenol, thymol, carvacrol and 4-allylphenol showed stronger antioxidant activities than did other components tested in the assay.
Twenty one essential oils were tested for insecticidal activity against spodoptera litura. Carvacrol has shown mutagenecity. ρ -cymene, linalool, terpinene -4-ol and thymol exhibited antifungal activity against Botrytis Cinerea and Rhizopus Stolonifer, two common storage pathogens of strawberries (Fragaria ananassa).
Effects of thymol on the spontaneous contractile activity have been found in in-vitro experiments with circular smooth muscle strips from guinea pig stomach and vena portae.
Thymol was found to possess an agonistic effect on α1-α2 and β-adrenergic receptors. Thymol has shown analgesic effect through its action on the α2 adrenergic receptors of the nerve cells.
Key words: Thymus vulgaris L., essential oil, composition, smooth muscle fibres, α1-α2 and -adrenergic receptors, natural anti oxidants, Fragaria ananassa, Rosaceae, volatile components, antifungal, Botrytis cinerea, Rhizopus stolonifer, Spodoptera litura.