Journal of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Research (ISSN : 0975-7384)

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Original Articles: 2017 Vol: 9 Issue: 5

Phytochemistry and Antimicrobial Studies of African Black Soap and its Modified Samples


African black soap was prepared from palm kernel oil and the filtrate of cocoa pod ash. This was divided into five portions with different natural beauty enhancing organic compounds added to four portions. These samples were analyzed chemically by pH determinations, Infrared spectra analyses and phytochemical screenings. They were also screened for in vitro antibacterial activities against two Gram-positive bacteria (Staphylococcus aureus and Bacillus subtilis) and two Gram-negative bacteria (Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Escherichia coli). Their pH values were between 8.90 and 9.78. Infrared spectra analyses of the black soap revealed strong bands due to υ (C=O) frequency of the keto group at 1668 and 1560 cm-1 and a strong band at 1379 cm-1 due to υ (C-O) frequency of the ester oxygen. The spectra of the modified samples showed no complexation via these oxygen donor atoms. Phytochemical screenings revealed the presence of saponins, flavonoids and terpenoids in the black soap. Modifying black soap by adding aleo vera, camwood, lime, honey or shea butter eliminated one or two of its phytochemical components, but even facilitated its activities against some of the tested Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria.