UGR Blog #1: Use of Agar and Natural Butters as Antibacterial Surfaces

The title of my research project is Use of agar and natural butters as antibacterial surfaces. The purpose of this project is to synthesize new surfaces from agar, natural butters, plant powders and essential oils that are resistant to bacteria. The bacteria we are testing against are Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. The goals of this project are to create antimicrobial surfaces that are also non-hazardous to humans. I hope to learn what essential oils and plant powders have antimicrobial effects against S. aureus, E. coli, and P. aeruginosa, in order to provide a solution to minimize the amount of bacterial infections in humans.

The methods I will be using to perform my research are the infusion of agar plates with different combinations of essential oils and natural plant powders in order to maximize the antimicrobial effect of the surface. The same will be applied to the natural butters. The samples with a base of natural butters will also undergo ultraviolet light testing, in order to see what the potential benefits are for protection from ultraviolet light. Some essential oils to be used are: Cinnamon Cassia, Black Cumin Seed, Ginger, Grape Seed, and Rosehip. Some of the plant powders to be used are Chlorella and Ginseng. These powders and oils will be infused into agar as well as natural butters such as, Coffee Butter and Murumuru Butter. I am looking forward to carrying out this research over the academic year.