Author: Ididiegwu Victoria Nkechinyere
Department: Medical Laboratory
Affiliation: Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka

The problem of antibacterial resistance to commonly used antibiotics coupled with the emergence of new and re-emerging diseases has led to a search for newer and alternative compounds for the treatment of drug-resistant infections. Thirty isolates of Staphylococcus aureus were subjected to three methods of identifying methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) namely Oxacillin disk, Latex agglutination and PCR. Using PCR as the gold standard, fifteen of the Staphylococcus aureus were identified as MRSA. The bioactive compound of Garcinia kola seed (Gutterfera) and Carica papaya root (pawpaw) powder were extracted with methanol in a Soxhlet apparatus. Phytochemical analysis showed that the extracts contain alkaloids, tannins, saponins, flavonoids and phenol. Saponins and flavonoids were not present in Carica papaya root. Extracts of Garcina kola seed and Carica papaya root were evaluated for the activity against MRSA. Twelve of the fifteen PCR confirmed MRSA were used to determine susceptibility to the plant extract using disk diffusion method. The Carica papaya root extract did not show any activity on MRSA isolate. The percentage of sensitivity and specificity of disk diffusion was 93.4% and 100%, and latex agglutination was 100% respectively. Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) and latex agglutination are recommended for identification of MRSA. Comparably latex test assay is a rapid test with high sensitivity, specificity, economical and more accessible. The result of the study also support the traditional application of Garcinia kola seed and suggests that the plant extract possess compounds with antibacterial properties that can be used as antibacterial agents in novel drugs for the treatment of infections associated with MRSA.

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