The chemical analysis and antibacterial activity of three types of propolis collected three different races of Apis mellifera bee in the same apiary were investigated. Propolis samples were investigated by GUMS, 48 compounds were identified 32 being new for propolis. The compounds identified indicated that the main plant sources of propolis were Populus alba, Populus tremuloides and Salix alba. The antimicrobial activity against Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Candida albicans was evaluated. Ethanolic extracts of propolis samples showed high antibacterial activity against Gram-positive cocci (Staphylococcus aureus), but had a weak activity against Gram-negative bacteria (Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa) and yeast (Candida albicans). Propolis sample collected by Apis mellifera caucasica showed a higher antibacterial activity than collected by Apis mellifera anatolica and Apis mellifera carnica. (c) 2005 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.