The compounds present in rose hips exerting an inhibitory action against melanogenesis in B16 mouse melanoma cells were investigated by dividing an aqueous extract of rose hips (RE) into four fractions. The 50% ethanol eluate from a DIAION HP-20 column significantly reduced the production of melanin and was mainly composed of procyanidin glycosides. We also found that this 50% ethanol eluate reduced the intracellular tyrosinase activity and also had a direct inhibitory effect on tyrosinase obtained as a protein mixture from the melanoma cell lysate. We also investigated the effect of orally administering RE on skin pigmentation in brown guinea pigs, and found that the pigmentation was inhibited together with the tyrosinase activity in the skin. These data collectively suggest that proanthocyanidins from RE inhibited melanogenesis in mouse melanoma cells and guinea pig skin, and could be useful as a skin-whitening agent when taken orally.
2011 by Japan Society for Bioscience, Biotechnology, and Agrochemistry