A fresh look at manuka and kanuka essential oils from New Zealand

Wendy Maddocks-Jennings, Jennifer Wilkinson, David Shillington, Heather Cavanagh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


Essential oil is obtained from manuka, Leptospermum scoparium and kanuka, Kunzea ericoides, which are indigenous plants to New Zealand. The oil from these plants has been commercially available to aromatherapists for more than a decade. In this time, attention has been given to the antiseptic and antimicrobial actions of the oils. Of most interest to researchers and aromatherapists is the presence of ß-triketones, present in the manuka oil. These triketones are believed to significantly contribute to the antimicrobial action. More recently, it has emerged that there are significant geographical variations affecting the composition of these oils. Whilst a full understanding of the therapeutic implications is some way off, it is important for aromatherapists to appreciate that these differences exist and the oils selected may match the intended therapeutic purpose.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)141-146
Number of pages6
JournalThe International Journal of Essential Oil Therapeutics
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2005


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