Skin Sensitization and Contact Dermatitis

In recent years there have been several reports in dermatological journals suggesting that tea tree oil causes contact dermatitis. Contact dermatitis is usually caused by sensitization to a substance and at a later stage coming in contact with the same substance. Tea tree oil has been regarded as a non-sensitizing substance (Tisserand and Balacs 1995) and this is certainly the case with guinea pigs. Bolt (1989e) carried out a skin sensitization potential trial with guinea pigs (OECD method 406)...

Preface To The Series

There is increasing interest in industry, academia and the health sciences in medicinal and aromatic plants. In passing from plant production to the eventual product used by the public, many sciences are involved. This series brings together information which is currently scattered through an ever increasing number of journals. Each volume gives an in-depth look at one plant genus, about which an area specialist has assembled information ranging from the production of the plant to market trends...

Bacterial Infections of the Skin

A number of infections of the hair follicles and sebaceous glands, such as pimples, acne vulgaris and furunculosis (boils and abcesses) are caused by bacteria, including S. aureus, Streptococcus spp. and Propionibacterium acnes. These organisms are sensitive to tea tree oil in laboratory tests (see previous sections) and there have been a number of studies carried out to determine their efficacy in clinical situations. Feinblatt (1960) discusses the unique property of oils containing terpene...

Coppicing

Tea tree has a strong coppicing ability (Plate 9) (Small 1981 Colton and Murtagh 1990) and vigorous coppicing is vital for rapid regrowth. Harvest initiates coppice regrowth, with new shoots beginning to appear within a few weeks. Blake (1983) found that coppicing vigour is influenced by a range of factors including month of harvest. He quoted a number of species which gave the best coppicing after cutting in winter or early spring, but this was not a universal finding. While Murtagh (1996b)...

Partitioning Effect in Formulated Products

It is well accepted that the anti-microbial activity resides in the aqueous phase of a preserved two phase system and is therefore dependant on the equilibrium concentration of the preservative in this phase. It is expected that tea tree oil will partition between the oil and water phases present in a two component system in accordance with the partition coefficient and the relative ratio of oil and water in the system. To estimate the likely concentration in the aqueous phase of a simple two...

Bioactivity of Essential Oils

After the essential oil had been obtained from the hydrodistillation of 100 g of freshly-gathered leaves in 500ml distilled water for 8 hours, each sample was tested on microorganism cultures of Erwinia, Candida albicans and Micrococcus. Each sample of oil came from one tree. The chemical composition was determined before carrying out this antimicrobial measurement. A 5mm diameter Whatman circle soaked with essential oil was placed in the centre of a Petri dish containing medium and...

Use of Solubilising and Emulsifying Agents

Broth and agar dilution methods have generally been developed for use with watersoluble preparations and require modification for use with essential oils of low water solubility. To ensure contact between the test organism and tea tree oil for the duration of the assay it is necessary to use a solubilising or emulsifying agent. The agents most commonly used are Tween 80 and Tween 20 at concentrations ranging from 0.001 to 20 (Beylier 1979 Walsh and Longstaff 1987 Chand et al. 1994 Carson et al....

Mole Crickets

Gryllotalpa spp. are easily recognised by their powerful forelegs used for digging. Mole crickets can cause significant damage to newly set tea tree transplants by severing their roots. Crickets usually forage in horizontal tunnels in the top 5 cm of soil but may feed on the soil surface during periods of high humidity following rain or irrigation. Damage relates to soil type and is worst in sandy loams near rivers or creeks. Agrotis caterpillars occasionally attack newly set transplants,...

Cajuputi Oil International Name

Wollongbar Agricultural Institute, Wollongbar, NSW, Australia The Australian flora is rich in trees and shrubs from the family Myrtaceae. Eucalyptus, is well known for profuse oil glands which contain a diverse range of constituents, of which 1,8-cineole is the most abundant and most commercially utilized (Doran 1991). The genus Melaleuca also contains hundreds of individual species with a myriad of oil constituents present in the leaf (Brophy and Doran 1996). Both genera extend beyond...

Tea Tree Constituents

Chemical Structure Cardamom

Wollongbar Agricultural Institute, Wollongbar, NSW, Australia As with most genera, Melaleuca contains a variety of primary and secondary metabolites. The volatile oil constituents of M. alternifolia and closely related species are the compounds responsible for the commercial development of Melaleuca as a medicinal and aromatic plant. Consequently the most frequently investigated aspects of the chemistry of tea tree concern the identification of these volatile oil constituents. As considerably...

Tea Tree Oil in the Treatment of Fungal Infections of the Skin and Nails

Fungal infections of the skin and nails tend to be persistent, irritating infections with a high rate of recurrence. Treatment may be oral or topical and is frequently required for many months, as penetration of the drugs to the site of the infection is poor. Side-effects are relatively common, particularly with drugs administered orally. Hence alternative treatments are desirable. Infections include tinea pedis (also known as athlete's foot), tinea (or pityriasis) versicolor, paronychia...

Antimicrobial Activity of Tea Tree

Penfold and Grant (1925) first demonstrated the activity of tea tree oil in the RidealWalker test, a standard test of the period, which employed Bacillus typhosus (now known as Salmonella typhi) as the test organism. The Rideal-Walker coefficient was reported to be 11, indicating that tea tree oil is 11 times more effective than phenol. The results in Table 1 show that tea tree oil also compares very favourably with a number of other essential oils when tested by this method. Very little...

Don Priest

Main Camp Marketing Pty Ltd, Ballina NSW, Australia On every continent, in many countries, new cosmetics and personal care products containing Australian tea tree oil (oil of Melaleuca alternifolia) are being launched at an ever increasing rate. Since the pioneering launches of personal care products in the 1980's by companies such as Thursday Plantations, Melaleuca Inc. and Dessert Essence, the 90's has seen an explosion of products containing Australian tea tree oil. Leading the way is the...

Michael Russell

Wollongbar Agricultural Institute, Wollongbar, NSW, Australia For some essential oils, as little as one teaspoonful can be fatal. Wormseed, sassafras, parsley, eucalyptus and camphor have all caused child fatalities in low doses (Tisserand and Balacs 1995). Consequently, guarding against accidentally overdosing with certain essential oils is important, especially with children. Storing essential oils that are known to be harmful out of children's reach and in child-proof bottles is a sensible...

The Condenser

The function of the condenser is to convert the steam and oil vapour that issues from the still to water and liquid oil at the desired temperature. The commonest types use water as the coolant although air-cooled condensers can be used in some circumstances, as can refrigeration. If flowing water is available, very little equipment is required to construct an effective condenser. For field stills, or small plantation stills, metal pipes running from the still to and under a stream or pond are...

Proline Analogues

The discovery of substantial quantities of proline analogues Figure 7 in the leaves of some Melaleuca species highlights a potentially commercial source of industrial chemical compounds. Coupled with the recent interest in biochemical changes in plants suffering water and salinity stress, is the ability of drought resistant species to accumulate proline and proline analogues including glycinebetaine. Investigations have shown that, when subject to water or salinity stress under glass house or...

Cytotoxicity using Human Cell Lines

All of the previous assessments of tea tree oil have been acquired from animal and human testing. Just recently, however, cytotoxic testing of the oil has been carried out. The use of cytotoxic toxic to cell tissue in vitro test tube testing has made testing of substances that are quite toxic, more animal friendly and thus more acceptable. The other advantage is that the same tissues can be used to test many substances and provide a more accurate comparison of the relative toxicity of different...

Infections of the Genitourinary System

Although Humphrey 1930 suggested the suitability of tea tree oil for treatment of vaginal infections, the first report in the literature of its effectiveness in treating such infections is that of Pena 1962 . He reported clinical cure following treatment of 130 cases of vaginal infections, due mostly to Trichomonas 116 cases and Candida albicans 4 cases . The treatment regime involved douching with a 0.4 solution of Melaleuca alternifolia oil and insertion of tampons saturated with a 20-40...

Production from Plantations in Indonesia

Early attempts to produce cajuput oil on Java and Sumatra, presumably using plants native to that part of the species range, failed because of poor oil quality Penfold and Morrison 1950 . It was not until 1926, when plantations were established at Ponorogo in East Java using seed from Buru Island, that the industry became established on Java Darmono 1995 . Subsequent plantings in East, Central and West Java used seed from Ponorogo. The present extent of M. cajuputi plantations on the island is...

Identification of Components

The constituents in each hydrodistilled essential oil were first tentatively identified by peak enrichment and their gas chromatographic GC retention indices on two fused silica capillary Table 1 Percentage of each chemical class and group in an essential oil of M. quinquenervia from New Caledonia 7.8 Monoterpenes Sesquiterpenes 90.6 Terpenols columns 25mx0.25mm i.d coated with OV-101, film thickness 0.25Jam 25mx0.22mm i.d. coated with Carbowax 20M, film thickness 0.25,am , using a...

Use of Essential Oils

Essential oils are valuable antiseptics with bioactivity against human pathogens. There are two ways of using the niaouli essential oils 2. French Pharmacopoeia regulated preparations. Use in Traditional Medicine Essential oils have a high antiseptic capacity. Niaouli oil is mainly used for pulmonary infections especially for colds and bronchitis. The oil can be absorbed as a tea drink decoction by boiling water with dried leaves , or by inhalation three drops of commercial oil in steaming...

Joseph Jbrophy

School of Chemistry, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia The preceding chapters have discussed the commercial species, M. cajuputi, M. quinquenervia and M. alternifolia including the closely related M. linariifolia . Now we present data on other species which have potential for commercial production. According to the latest research there are upwards of 230 species within the genus Melaleuca. Over the last 30 years these have been documented in works by Blake 1968 Carrick and...