Int J Oral Biol.  2017 Mar;42(1):25-31. 10.11620/IJOB.2017.42.1.25.

Anti-cariogenic Properties of α-Pinene, a Monoterpene in Plant Essential Oil

  • 1Department of Oral Biochemistry, School of Dentistry, Wonkwang University, Iksan, Korea.
  • 2Department of Pediatric dentistry, School of Dentistry, Wonkwang University, Iksan, Korea.
  • 3Department of Home Economics Education, Wonkwang University, Iksan, Korea.
  • 4Department of Oral Microbiology & Immunology, School of Dentistry, Wonkwang University, Iksan, Korea.


Dental caries is the most common chronic disease in the dental field. Streptococcus mutans (S. mutans) is the most important bacteria in the formation of dental plaque and dental caries. In a previous study, we confirmed that the essential oil of Chrysanthemum boreale has antibacterial activity against S. mutans. Alpha-pinene is one of the major chemical components of Chrysanthemum boreale essential oil. In the present study, we investigated the inhibitory effects of α-pinene on cariogenic properties such as growth, acid production, biofilm formation, and bactericidal activity on S. mutans. Alpha-pinene at a concentration range of 0.25-0.5 mg/mL significantly inhibited the growth of S. mutans and acid production of S. mutans. Biofilm formation was significantly inhibited at < 0.0625 mg/mL α-pinene, similar to the data from scanning electronic microscopy. Under confocal laser scanning microscopy, the bacterial viability was decreased by α-pinene in a dose-dependent manner. These results suggested that α-pinene may be a useful agent for inhibiting the cariogenic properties of S. mutans.


Chrysanthemum boreale; α-pinene; dental caries; Streptococcus mutans; bacteria; adhesion

MeSH Terms

Chronic Disease
Dental Caries
Dental Plaque
Microbial Viability
Microscopy, Confocal
Streptococcus mutans
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