Preparation and Antifungal Activities of Microcapsules of Neem Extract Used in Populus tomentosa Deteriorated by Three Mold Fungi

Lulu Chang, Guoqi Xu, Lihai Wang


Microcapsules of neem extract (MNE) were observed using an optical microscope (OM) and scanning electron microscope (SEM). The antifungal activity of the extract was evaluated by an agar diffusion assay. The MNE were induced into the wood material by a full-cell process. The diameters of the microcapsules were measured by OM, and the distribution of microcapsules in wood was observed by SEM. Wood blocks of Populus tomentosa were treated with the MNE, neem extract (NE), and an acid mixture of melamine formaldehyde resin (MF) and sodium dodecyl sulfate (AMS); their antifungal properties against Penicillium citrinum, Trichoderma virens, and Aspergillus niger were visually assessed. The microcapsules prepared by MF, 1% sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS), and 10% NH4Cl showed regular shape and good dispersion. The agar diffusion assay showed that the neem extract had significant inhibition against all tested fungi, and the optimum concentration of NE was 10%. The diameters of the microcapsules were normally distributed in a range of 0.4 μm to 4 μm, and the microcapsules were unevenly distributed in the vessels and surface of Populus tomentosa. Wood specimens treated with MNE observed complete inhibition to all studied fungi, and the mark grades of specimens treated with MNE against three fungi all reached 5 (no growth of fungi).


Antifungal activities; Microcapsules; Neem; Extract; Populus tomentosa

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