The Anti-melanogenesis Activities of Some Selected Red Macroalgae from Northern Coasts of the Persian Gulf

Document Type : Research article


1 Marine Pharmaceutical Research Center, School of Pharmacy, Ahvaz Jundishapur University of Medical Sciences, Iran.

2 Department of Biology, School of Sciences, Ahvaz Branch, Islamic Azad University, Ahvaz, Iran.

3 Department of Clinical Sciences, School of Veterinary Medicine, Shahid Chamran University, Ahvaz, Iran.

4 Department of Medicinal Chemistry, School of Pharmacy, Ahvaz Jundishapur University of Medical Sciences, Ahvaz, Iran.

5 Department of Pharmacognosy, School of Pharmacy, Ahvaz Jundishapur University of Medical Sciences, Iran.


Tyrosinase is a key enzyme in melanin production. Therefore, tyrosinase inhibitors are used in cosmetic and medicinal industries to prevent or treat overproduction of melanin such as melasma, solar lentigo and post inflammatory melanoderma. Due to safety of natural whitening agents, in the present study, in-vitro anti-tyrosinase and in-vivo anti-melanogenesis activities of some selected red macroalgae of the Persian Gulf were investigated. The effects of various concentrations (100, 250 and 500 µg/mL) of methanolic extracts of three red macroalgae including Digenea simplex, Laurencia papillosa, and Laurencia paniculata on the activity of diphenolase of mushroom tyrosinase were studied by using L-Dopa as substrate. Subsequently, the activity of macroalgae with high inhibitory effect on hydroxylation of L-tyrosine was investigated by mushroom tyrosinase and zebrafish model. Anti-melanogenesis effects of algae extracts were studied on zebrafish as an alternative in-vivo model. Kojic acid was used as a positive control.
 All the tested macroalgae showed significantly a lower inhibitory effect on activities of diphenolase and monophenolase (of mushroom tyrosinase) compared to kojic acid. D. simplex showed the most anti-tyrosinase activity in zebrafish model among the samples. D. simplex extract and Kojic acid inhibited tyrosinase activity by 43.18% and 50.45%, and decreased total melanin content of zebrafish by 47.27% and 50.21%, respectively.


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