Why DMSO for plant extracts

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Viraj Gala
Viraj Gala's picture
Why DMSO for plant extracts

 I am working with an ethyl acetate extract of a plant. To check for its activity, I resuspended my extract in ethyl acetate at 2 mg/ml, and used ethyl acetate as control. But ethyl acetate itself is quite toxic to the bacteria. So, I have heard that mostly, plant extracts are redissolved in DMSO. I understand DMSO is an aqueous solvent, while my extract has been obtained from less polar solvent. So, should  I still try to dissolve my extract in DMSO, if so what should be my DMSO conc? Or else, can you please suggest some other , less toxic solvent for my plant extract? 
Other thing is that DMSO too is toxic, then why do people still use DMSO for plant extracts?