Does Bitter Melon (Momordica charantia) have Antibacterial Property?Debolina Ghosh*
High School Student, Hathaway Brown School, Shaker Heights, Ohio, USA
- *Corresponding Author:
- Debolina Ghosh
Hathaway Brown School
19600 North Park Blvd, Shaker Heights
Ohio- 44122, USA
E-mail: [email protected]
Received date: March 06, 2014; Accepted date: July 17, 2014; Published date: July 31, 2014
Citation: Ghosh D (2014) Does Bitter Melon (Momordica charantia) have Antibacterial Property? J Food Process Technol 5:345. doi:10.4172/2157-7110.1000345
Copyright: © 2014 Ghosh D. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Introduction: The aim of this study was to see if Mormodica charantia, better known as bitter melon had any antibacterial property as claimed by many food and nutrition specialists. Materials and Methods: Bitter melon extract was obtained from its interior, middle, and outside skin and mixed with sterile distilled water. Agar gel disk diffusion method was used to look for clear zones of inhibition of the Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) and Escherichia coli (E. coli) colonies around the disks soaked with bitter melon extracts. Standardized Penicillin and Erythromycin disks were used as positive control for S. aureus while Gentamicin disks were used for E. coli. Unmedicated disks soaked with distilled water were used as negative control. Petri dishes with bacteria and the disks were incubated at 37°C. After 24 hours, the clear zones of inhibition around the disks were measured. In addition, liquid extract of bitter melon was put in liquid microKwik culture vials containing S. aureus and E. coli. These were incubated at 37°C for 24 hours and observed for any color change. Results: After 24 hours of incubation, petri dishes containing S. aureus with Penicillin and Erythromycin disks showed clear zones of inhibition (average 12.9 mm, and 9 mm respectively). This was similar to the Gentamicin disks for E. coli (average 11 mm). There were no clear zones of inhibition around the unmedicated disks or the ones soaked in distilled water or bitter melon extract (interior, middle or exterior skin). Bitter melon extract did not change the color of liquid microKwik media containing the bacteria. Discussion/Conclusions: Contrary to common belief bitter melon does not have any antibiotic property. Though this study drew a negative conclusion, the inference has significant implication in the field of food technology, nutrition and alternative/herbal medicine.