Introduction

Microbial natural products are the origin of most of the antibiotics on the market today. However, research in antibiotics and natural products has declined significantly over the past decade as a consequence of a variety of factors including lack of interest shown by industry in the field and the strong competition from collections of synthetic compounds as sources of drug leads.1 In addition, owing to the increasing resistance of bacterial isolates for antibiotics more intense efforts are being made to find alternative antimicrobial compounds.2 Against the growing problem of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, alternative sources which are nontoxic to humans must be found.

Natural antimicrobials will undoubtedly have an important role in protecting against infection. This new direction in research has been the subject of many studies on antimicrobial effect of various organism including cyanobacteria. Native people have harvested Spirulina platensis from Chad Lake in Africa and Texcoco Lake in Mexico for use as a source of food. Furthermore, S. platensis has been used by humans because of its nutritional and possibly medicinal effects.3

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