Background: A focus on the need to develop alternative treatment protocols, especially
from natural sources like plants, to circumvent the antimicrobial resistance experienced with synthetic
products has become imperative.
Objective: This research focused on the evaluation of the antifungal activities of Nigella sativa and
the formulation of a vaginal suppository in a bid to provide therapeutic solutions to vaginal candidiasis.
Methods: Antifungal activities of the methanol extracts of seeds and commercial oil from Nigella
sativa were examined by the agar well diffusion method against ten clinical isolates of Candida albicans
and one reference standard Candida albicans ATCC 3147. Clotrimazole was used as a positive
control. Vaginal suppositories were formulated with 20% of the alcohol extract and commercial
oil using cocoa butter and shea butter as bases. The suppositories were assessed for their physicochemical
and in-vitro dissolution properties. Agar well diffusion method was used to examine
the antifungal activities of the Nigella sativa suppositories.
Results: The zones of inhibition of the extract ranged between 12.00 ± 1.73 and 32.33 ± 3.21 mm.
After formulation, both cocoa butter and shea butter bases were found to be compatible with the extract.
They exhibited a relatively high disintegration time (8.56 ± 0.42 to 12.39 ± 0.98 min). The cocoa
butter base gave stable suppositories and a faster release rate (56.95 ± 1.37 min) of the extract.
The zones of inhibition of the suppositories incorporated with the extract ranged between 10.00 ±
1.00 and 23.67 ± 2.08 mm.
Conclusion: These outcomes showed that the extract possesses antifungal activities, and when incorporated
into suppositories, activities vary according to the bases employed, with the cocoa butter
base being the more effective of the two bases.