Anti-fungal properties of black seed oil
Black seed oil is well know to fight a range of different bacteria, fungi and viruses, which can cause infections in humans. It is commonly used in traditional medicine for a range of different infections.
Skin fungal infections can be some of the most stubborn and annoying infections we face often requiring repeated courses of anti-fungal creams and steroids, and sometimes systemic anti-fungal treatment.
Most fungal skin infections are caused by three pathogenic dermatophyte strains; Trichophyton mentagrophytes, which cause ringworm in companion animals, Microsporum canis a fungus that can cause tinea capitis (scalp ringworm) and Microsporum gypseum a soil-associated dermatophyte that can infect the upper dead layers of the skin.
A recent study from Research Center for Tropical and Infectious Diseases, Kerman University of Medical Science, Iran evaluated antifungal activities of the essential oil and various extracts of Nigella sativa including its main component, thymoquinone against these three common pathogenic fungi.
Fungal cultures were grown on plates and the ability of black seed oil and its extracts to inhibit the growth of fungal cultures was analysed.
The results showed that the essential oil and various extracts of N. sativa particularly thymoquinone have potent antifungal effects on T. mentagrophytes, M. canis and M. gypseum as pathogenic dermatophyte strains.
This study supports the use of N. sativa seeds in the traditional medicine for dermatophytic infections.
- Mahmoudvand H, Sepahvand A, Jahanbakhsh S, Ezatpour B, Ayatollahi Mousavi SA. Evaluation of antifungal activities of the essential oil and various extracts of Nigella sativa and its main component, thymoquinone against pathogenic dermatophyte strain. J Mycol Med. 2014 Oct 19. pii: S1156-5233(14)00231-5. doi: 10.1016/j.mycmed.2014.06.048. [see here]