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Lipids and Essential Oils as Antimicrobial Agents

Lipids and Essential Oils as Antimicrobial Agents

Halldor Thormar (Editor)

ISBN: 978-0-470-97667-8

Dec 2010

336 pages



Lipids and essential oils have strong antimicrobial properties — they kill or inhibit the growth of microbes such as bacteria, fungi, or viruses. They are being studied for use in the prevention and treatment of infections, as potential disinfectants, and for their preservative and antimicrobial properties when formulated as pharmaceuticals, in food products, and in cosmetics.

Lipids and Essential Oils as Antimicrobial Agents is a comprehensive review of the scientific knowledge in this field. International experts provide summaries on:

  • the chemical and biological properties of lipids and essential oils
  • use of lipids and essential oils in pharmaceuticals, cosmetics and health foods
  • antimicrobial effects of lipids
  • in vivo and in vitro
  • antimicrobial lipids in milk
  • antimicrobial lipids of the skin
  • antibacterial lipids as sanitizers and disinfectants
  • antibacterial, antifungal, and antiviral activities of essential oils
  • antimicrobial lipids in milk
  • antimicrobial lipids of the skin
  • antibacterial lipids as sanitizers and disinfectants
  • antibacterial, antifungal, and antiviral activities of essential oils

Lipids and Essential Oils as Antimicrobial Agents is an essential guide to this important topic for researchers and advanced students in academia and research working in pharmaceutical, cosmetic and food sciences, biochemistry and natural products chemistry, microbiology; and for health care scientists and professionals working in the fields of public health and infectious diseases. It will also be of interest to anyone concerned about health issues and particularly to those who are conscious of the benefits of health food and natural products.

List of Contributors.


1 Membranes as Targets of Antimicrobial Lipids (Peter J. Quinn).

1.1 Introduction.

1.2 Oil and Water Don't Mix!

1.3 Polar Lipids.

1.4 Properties of Surfactants.

1.5 Cell Membranes.

1.6 The Action of Antimicrobial Lipids on Cell Membranes.

1.7 Conclusions.

2 Antibacterial Effects of Lipids: Historical Review (1881 to 1960) (Halldor Thormar).

2.1 Introduction.

2.2 Antibacterial Activity of Soaps.

2.2.1 Antibacterial Acids and Their Derivatives.

2.3 Inhibition of Lipids and Serum Albumin against the Antibacterial Action of Soaps.

2.4 Diverse Actions of Fatty Acids and Their Salts on Bacteria.

2.5 The Nature of the Bactericidal Action of Fatty Acids.

2.6 A Possible Role of Soaps and Fatty Acids in Host Defence against Bacteria.

2.7 Studies of Prophylactic and Therapeutic Applications of Soaps and Fatty Acids.

2.8 Conclusions.

3 Antibacterial, Antiviral and Antifungal Activities of Lipids (Gudmundur Bergsson, Hilmar Hilmarsson and Halldor Thormar).

3.1 Introduction.

3.2 Antibacterial Activities of Fatty Acids and Monoglycerides.

3.3 Antiviral Activities of Fatty Alcohols, Fatty Acids and Monoglycerides.

3.4 Antifungal Activities of Fatty Acids and Monoglycerides.

3.5 Conclusions.

4 Antimicrobial Lipids in Milk (Charles E. Isaacs).

4.1 Introduction.

4.2 Occurrence.

4.3 Molecular Properties.

4.4 Antimicrobial Activity.

4.5 Applications.

4.6 Safety, Tolerance and Efficacy.

4.7 Conclusions.

5 Antimicrobial Lipids of the Skin and Tear Film (Carol L. Bratt, Phil Wertz, David Drake, Deborah V. Dawson and Kim A. Brogden).

5.1 Introduction.

5.2 Innate Immune Mechanisms in Skin.

5.3 Types and Locations of Lipids of the Skin and Tear Film.

5.4 Functions of Lipids.

5.5 Antimicrobial Activity of Lipids and Their Mechanisms of Killing.

5.6 Synergy of Cutaneous Lipids and Other Innate Immune Molecules.

5.7 Lipids as Therapeutic Agents.

5.8 Conclusions.

6 Antimicrobial Lipids and Innate Immunity (Halldor Thormar).

6.1 Introduction.

6.2 The Role of Human Milk Lipids in Innate Immunity.

6.3 Antimicrobial Lipids in the Pulmonary Mucosa.

6.4 Antimicrobial Skin Lipids.

6.5 Conclusions.

7 Lipids as Active Ingredients in Pharmaceuticals, Cosmetics and Health Foods (Thordis Kristmundsdottir and Skuli Skulason).

7.1 Introduction.

7.2 Antimicrobial Effects of Lipids.

7.3 Lipids in Pharmaceuticals.

7.4 Microbicidal Lipids in Agriculture and Aquaculture.

7.5 Lipids in Therapy.

7.6 Lipids in Cosmetics.

7.7 Lipids in Health Food.

7.8 Conclusions.

8 Antimicrobial Lipids as Disinfectants, Antiseptics and Sanitizers (Halldor Thormar and Hilmar Hilmarsson).

8.1 Introduction.

8.2 Soaps as Disinfectants and Antiseptics.

8.3 Use of Bactericidal Lipids to Reduce Microbial Contamination of Food Products.

8.4 Killing of Foodborne Bacteria by Glycerol Monocaprate (Monocaprin) Emulsions.

8.5 Conclusions.

9 Chemistry and Bioactivity of Essential Oils (Christine F. Carson and Katherine A. Hammer).

9.1 Introduction.

9.2 Chemistry of Essential Oils.

9.3 Biological Activity of Essential Oils.

9.4 Uses of Essential Oils.

9.5 Conclusions.

10 Antiviral Effects of Plant-Derived Essential Oils and Pure Oil Components (Paul Schnitzler, Akram Astani and J¨urgen Reichling).

10.1 Introduction.

10.2 Characterization and Medicinal Use of Essential Oils.

10.3 Cytotoxicity of Essential Oils.

10.4 Antiviral Activities of Essential oils.

10.5 Mode of Antiviral Action of Essential Oils.

10.6 Conclusions.

11 Antibacterial and Antifungal Activities of Essential Oils (Katherine A. Hammer and Christine F. Carson).

11.1 Introduction.

11.2 Methods for Quantifying Antimicrobial Activity.

11.3 Antibacterial and Antifungal Essential Oils by Plant Family.

11.4 Antimicrobial Essential-Oil Components.

11.5 Factors Influencing Activity.

11.6 Mechanisms of Action.

11.7 Clinical Efficacy of Essential Oils and Components.

11.8 Toxicity of Essential Oils.

11.9 Conclusions.


""I recommend this book to all scientists, researchers, academicians, health professionals in academia, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, food and health sectors interested in natural products, oils, nutrition and health matters. Students can greatly benefit from the comprehensive reviews in various chapters in order to understand and learn similar actions of these two diverse groups of natural chemicals."" (Herbalgram, 1 February 2012)