Influence of Four Phlomis Species on Melanogenesis in Human Malignant Melanoma (SKMEL-3) Cells

Document Type: Original paper


1 Medicinal Plants Research Center, Faculty of Pharmacy, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.

2 Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, Pasteur Institute of Iran, Tehran, Iran.


Background and objectives: Phytochemical studies have shown that the Phlomis species are rich in polyphenolics and iridoid glycosides and many of them have shown potential value in different biological and pharmacological activities. In this study, we evaluated the effect of Phlomis persica, P. brugieri, P. olivieri and P. anisodontea extracts on melanin production in human malignant melanoma (SKMEL-3) cells. Methods: The anti-tyrosinase activity of the extracts was investigated using mushroom tyrosinase assay. Cytotoxicity potentials were examined through MTT assay on SKMEL-3 cell line and then the level of melanin formation in SKMEL-3 cells was determined. Results: The anti-tyrosinase activity of the Phlomis extracts was not remarkable (about 0.1 mg/mL). All extracts significantly increased the melanin content in SKMEL-3 cells at 0.25 mg/mL and among them P. anisodontea extract seemed to be more efficient in stimulating melanin production. Conclusion: Based on our results, we suggest these total extracts particularly P. anisodontea extract contain the potent skin browning agents that can be used in pharmaceutical and cosmetic products.


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