3rd Edition of Euro-Global Conference on Biotechnology and Bioengineering

June 14-15 | Online Event

June 14-15, 2023 | Online Event
ECBB 2023

Bengu Erguden

Bengu Erguden, Speaker at Bioengineering Conferences
Gebze Technical University, Turkey
Title: Recent advances on the terpene based antimicrobial agents


Plant tissues are natural sources of bioactive molecules to control pathogens that cause infections, as they contain secondary metabolites with antimicrobial activities. Terpenoids especially have been the subject of a considerable number of investigations that uncovered extensive pharmacological properties, including antifungal and antibacterial effects. However, their mechanism of action remains elusive. In order to use terpenoids as antimicrobial and antifungal agents in food preservation in a rational way, a good knowledge of their mode of action is required. Accordingly, we recently uncovered the antifungal properties of phenolic terpenoids thymol, carvacrol and eugenol, cyclic terpenes limonene, carveol, and α-pinene, in addition to the closely related compounds of different chemical structures. We also examined the cell membrane deterioration upon the addition of these reagents. Our results demonstrate that the presence of a phenolic –OH moiety is crucial, and hydrophobicity gained by the aromatic ring structure contributes to the ability of penetration and damaging yeast plasma membrane to achieve the high antifungal activity. Later, we studied the antibacterial activity of 12 different terpenoids or related structures in a comparative way, all of the terpenoids studied proved to be highly active against both Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria cells. We also revealed that the phenolic terpenoids are superior to other substituted derivatives. This presentation will focus on our recent learnings about the effect of terpenoids on the cell walls, cell membranes of yeasts and disruption of cell membrane integrity of both Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria cells. These results will improve our knowledge of the mechanism of antimicrobial activity of terpenoids and help widen their use. 

Audience Take Away Notes :

  • Terpenoids have been the subject of a considerable number of investigations that uncovered extensive pharmacological properties, including antifungal, antibacterial, antiviral, anticancer, antioxidant effects. Our findings will directly affect the research on this topic, improve our understanding of their mode of action and aid our efforts on the drug design with specific cellular targets.
  • Terpenoids are important antimicrobial agents and their mechanism of action is of scientific importance. Our results will provide structural elements that help increase antimicrobial activity of terpenoids and the topic will be a topic of interest for pharmacology lectures and will be a basis for future research area for pharmacological sciences. 
  • This presentation will focus on the structural effects of functional groups on the activity of terpenoids and their target in the cell. Thus, future drug designs will be based on this knowledge and directly use the functional groups that increase activity at the correct position.


Erguden received her Bachelor’s and MS degrees from the Middle East Technical University in Turkey, where she studied Chemistry. She then moved to Germany and studied Molecular Biology at the University of Heidelberg, where she received her PhD degree in 2009. After lecturing at various universities in Turkey on the topic of Molecular and Cell Biology for two years, she joined the Faculty of Bioengineering Department of Gebze Technical University and recently promoted to become an Associate Professor. She has published more than 20 research articles in SCI(E) journals.