Recent studies have explored Stevia rebaudiana Bertoni leaf extracts for their antibacterial potential and phytochemical content. However, the impact of extraction methods and solvents on aquaculture bacteria remains understudied. This research aimed to evaluate the antibacterial, radical scavenging, and phytochemical properties of S. rebaudiana extracts against Aeromonas species. Dried S. rebaudiana leaves were extracted using methanol (Mt) and ethanol (Et) through Soxhlet and maceration methods (SMt, SEt, MMt and MEt respectively). Soxhlet extraction yielded higher amounts (36.29% for Mt, 23.87% for Et) compared to maceration. Phytochemical analysis identified phenolics, flavonoids, alkaloids, saponin, tannin, and steroids in all extracts. Notably, MEt had elevated phenolic and flavonoid content, while SEt contained more tannins. MEt exhibited the strongest antioxidant activity (IC50 = 67.95µg/mL), aligning with its high phenolic and flavonoid levels. In antibacterial assays against Aeromonas strains, ethanol extract showed the largest zone of inhibition (ZOI) of 16.67mm for A. salmonicida, followed by methanol extract (15mm) at 250 mg/mL, using maceration and Soxhlet methods, respectively. However, none of the extracts displayed activity against A. hydrophila. This suggests that cold maceration is a cost-effective method that preserves heat-sensitive secondary metabolites within a shorter extraction time. In conclusion, this study highlights the significance of extraction techniques and solvents in obtaining potent antibacterial and antioxidant extracts from S. rebaudiana leaves. The findings emphasize the potential of these extracts in aquaculture practices and open avenues for further research in utilizing natural compounds for sustainable aquaculture strategies.
Stevia rebaudiana, Aeromonas, Antioxidant, Anti-inflammatory, Secondary Metabolites, Maceration
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