Document Type : Research Article
Department of Biology, Gorgan Branch, Islamic Azad University, Gorgan, Iran
Fungal infections are a major health problem worldwide due to their high prevalence. Proper disinfection is the most effective way to control such infections. The aim of this study was to determine the frequency of fungi isolates from sport mats and to investigate antifungal properties of oregano essential oil against the isolates. In this cross-sectional study, 48 samples were collected from six sports clubs between spring and summer 2020. The samples were analyzed using the sterile carpet method (4×4). After microscopic examination and mycological culture, the antifungal effect of oregano essential oil was evaluated using the dilution-neutralization method according to the protocols of Iran’s national standards 2824 and 9899.Overall, fungal isolates were found in 23 samples (47.9%), of which 56.6% were dermatophytes and 43.4% were non-dermatophyte species. Trichophyton tonsurans (34.8%) and Aspergillus niger (21.8%) were the most common dermatophyte and non-dermatophyte isolates, respectively. The oregano essential oil at concentration of 400 mg/ml, inhibited growth of 65% of non-dermatophyte isolates (p <0.05). This effect was more profound against Candida albicans. However, the essential oil had no significant effect on dermatophytes (P>0.05). Given the satisfactory antifungal effect of oregano essential oil in high concentration, it is suggested to use this essential oil as a natural disinfectant to control growth of non-dermatophyte fungi in sports clubs.