Mitchell, Sylvia A.; Millar, M.; Ahmad, Mohammed H.
Author Affiliation, Ana.
Neem (Azadirachta indica) research at the Biotechnology Center: Testing of neem formulations, azadirachtin levels in neem oil and micropropagation of neem plantlets
Jamaican Journal of science and technology
Date of Publication
Neem (Azadirachta indica) trees are scattered throughout Jamaica but we scarcely know the potential of this tree. Neem trees are native to the Indian sub-continent and are highly esteemed in India. For centuries, its derivatives have found use in agriculture, public health, medicine, toiletries, cosmetics, and livestock production and health. Over 300 insect species and a large number of plant pathogens have been controlled by various neem products. Every part of the neem tree is bio-active and is already being used to make commercial products. The most important derivative from the Neem trees is its seed oil. Neem oil contains many active compounds including azadiractin, salannin, gedunin, meliantrol, deacetylsalannin and azadiradion. The neem tree is the subject of active research at the Biotechnology Centre. This research includes the development and field testing of bio-active products, determining the levels of active ingredients, and neem micropropagation. The results indicate that there is tremendous potential for the development of a neem industry in Jamaica. Neem formulations tested decreased bacterial and fungal levels. The quantification of the active ingredient azadirachtin in neem, means these formulations can be standardized. Micropropagation means these plants can be produced throughout the year and in large quantities. The implication of these results is discussed.....