Compilation of herbal plants (description, geographical distribution, taxonomy, line drawings), biodiversity and herbarium.

Read More
Research & Publication

Description of herbal and T&CM research, searchable publication and process from medicinal plant discovery to clinical trial in producing a high-quality registered herbal drug.

Read More
Traditional & Complementary Medicine (T&CM)


Definition and description of therapies, policy, training and education, research in the practise of (T&CM) and integrated medicine system.           

Read More


News Update

Announcement & Advertisement

Forthcoming Events

International Conference on Traditional Medicine and Phytochemistry 2021

From Mon, 12. July 2021 Until Wed, 14. July 2021

Asian Symposium on Medicinal Plants and Spices XVII (2020)

From Tue, 17. August 2021 Until Thu, 19. August 2021

Origanum compactum

Origanum compactum

[span class=alert]In regards to the Traditional Use and Therapeutic Action sections of Essential Oils, the oils are rated as is standard practice in the French school of aromatherapy and others. The ratings ranked from one (+) to four (++++) with four indicating the highest value, indicate the oil’s therapeutic value from a practicing clinician’s point of view. The French rating system mentioned are obtained from this book reference entitle ‘Les Cahiers Pratiques D'Aromatherapie Selon L'Ecole Francaise’ (Authors: Francine Baudry, Pascal Debauche & Dominique Baudoux). However, further clarification might be required and will be updated once additional information of the rating system is obtained.[/span]

Family Name


Genus Name


Vernacular Name

Compact oregano, compacticum, oregano

Original Habitat

Origanum compactum is a ground-covering plant grows in the Mediterranean area particularly in Morocco. It rarely flowers, grows very close to the ground and requires full direct sunlight.

Plant Part Used

Flowering tops


Essential oils from the Origanum genus are often used interchangeably in various foods and beverages.  In the perfume and fragrance industry, it is primarily the sweet marjoram that is used. In therapeutic aromatherapy, Origanum compacticum is used as a single oil and in therapeutically targeted formulations.[1]


The essential oil of Origanum compacticum is steam distilled from the aerial parts of the plant. The oil is clear to pale yellow and very viscous with an herbaceous, woody aroma.

Chemical Constituents

Phenols (70%): Thymol, carvacrol
Terpenes (25%): P-cymene, mycrene [2] [3] [4]

Medicinal Uses

Strong disinfectant with a wide range of uses ++++
Stimulates the immune system +++
General tonic +++
Parasiticide +++ [5]

 Antibacterial: The antibacterial effects of O. compactum have been documented, however, the mechanism of action was unknown against certain bacteria. Researchers examined this essential oil against Pseudomonas aeruginosa ATCC 27853 and Staphylococcus aureus ATCC 29213 and found that the damage caused to these bacterial strains was through potassium leakage and propidium iodide uptake.[6]

In addition, this essential oil has been shown effective against both gram positive and negative bacteria.[7]

Antioxidant: The antioxidant activity of compact oregano oil is attributed to its phenolic constituents.[5]

Antifungal: The antifungal activity of O. compactum was assessed in a laboratory analysis and demonstrated strong activity against Botrytis cinerea. Carvacrol was found to be the constituent responsible for this action.[8]

Cytotoxic: Using the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, the cytotoxic effects of several; essential oils were studied, including compact oregano. All oils tested including O. compacticum, demonstrated cytotoxic activity by oxidative stress as seen by mitochondrial damage.[9]

Traditional Use

Rhino, bronchial and lung infections ++++
Bacteremia, viremia, malaria +++
Dysentery, amebiasis (amebic dysentery), tropical diseases +++
Cystitis, nephritis ++
Asthenia +++

Insecticide: The essential oil of compact oregano is an effective insecticide against mosquitoes.[10]

Contraindications and Precautions

This essential oil is dermocaustic. It should not be applied to large areas of the skin and should always be diluted.



[span class=alert]Keep out of reach of children as oils are highly concentrated.Essential oils are irritating to the eyes.  Avoid contact with eye area.Always dilute essential oils with carrier oil, lotion, cream or gel even when using in diffuser or bath.Essential oils are sometimes prescribed to be used internally, but should only be used internally under professional supervision.[/span]


  1. Lis-Balchan M. Aromatherapy science: a guide for healthcare professionals. London: Pharmaceutical Press; 2006.
  2. Mezzoug N. Investigation of the mutagenic and antimutagenic effects of Origanum compactum essential oil and some of its constituents. Mutat Res. 18 May2007;629(2):100-110.
  3. Nhu-Trang TT. Deuterium/hydrogen ratio analysis of thymol, carvacrol, gamma-terpinene and p-cymene in thyme, savory and oregano essential oils by gas chromatography-pyrolysis-isotope ratio mass spectrometry. J Chromatogr A. 3 Nov2006;1132(1-2):219-227.
  4. Van Den Broucke CO. Chemical Investigation of the Essential Oil of Origanum compactum. Planta Med. 1980;38:264-266.
  5. Bouhdid S. Antibacterial and antioxidant activities of Origanum compactum essential oil. African J Biotech. May2008;7(10):1563-1570.
  6. Bouhdid S. Investigation of functional and morphological changes in Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Staphylococcus aureus cells induced by Origanum compactum essential oil. J Appl Microbiol. May2009;106(5):1558-1568.
  7. Rhayour K. The mechanism of bactericidal action of oregano and clove essential oils and of their phenolic major components on Escherichia coli and Bacillus subtilis. JEOR. CABI Abstract.
  8. Bouchra C. Chemical composition and antifungal activity of essential oils of seven Moroccan Labiatae against Botrytis cinerea Pers: Fr. J Ethnopharmacol. Nov2003;89(1):165-169.
  9. Bakkali F. Cytotoxicity and gene induction by some essential oils in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Mutat Res. 1 Aug2005;585(1-2):1-13.
  10. Cetin H. A study of the larvicidal activity of Origanum (Labiatae) species from southwest Turkey. J Vector Ecolo. Jun2006;31(1):118-122.

Explore Further

Consumer Data

Consumer data including medicinal herbs, dietary supplement monographs, health condition monographs and interactions and depletions.                                    

Read More
Professional Data

Professional data organized into medicinal herbs, dietary supplement monographs, health condition monographs, T&CM herbs, formulas, health conditions, interactions and depletions.

Read More
International Data

We offer International linkages to provide extensive content pertaining to many facets of T&CM as well as Integrated Medicine. Please register for access.    

Read More