Preliminary Screening of Selected Plant Extracts for Anti Tyrosinase Activity


  • PSG College of Technology, Department of Biotechnology, Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu, 641004, India


Tyrosinase inhibition is an important approach towards controlling hyper pigmentation. We aimed to screen alcoholic extracts of 11 plants extract for their tyrosinase inhibitory activity. These plants have been used traditionally in the treatment of skin ailments and for the improvement of skin complexion. The extracts were quantified for total phenols, alkaloids and tannins. In vitro tyrosinase inhibition was performed with kojic acid as the positive control. Cell viability was tested on B16 F0 melanoma cells. The extracts of Rosa berberifolia, Punica granatum and Casiia angustifolia showed more than 80% inhibition at 500 mg/ml concentration. Nine of the extracts were also shown to have a high phenolic content greater than 200 mg/g of the plant material. The tyrosinase inhibitory activity of the extracts of Cassia angustifolia, Punica granatum and Rosa berberifolia were comparable with that of the control, kojic acid. The three extracts also showed lesser than 50% cytotoxicity at the concentrations tested. From the screening assays, it is seen that three plants have appreciable tyrosinase inhibitory activity. Hence, these plants may be further evaluated for their use in cosmetics and hyper pigmentation.


Cosmetics, Melanin, Plant Extracts, Phenolics, Skin Whitening, Tyrosinase Inhibition

Subject Discipline

Pharmacy and Pharmacology

Full Text:


Yamaguchi Y, Takahashi K, Zmudzka BZ, Kornhauser A, Miller SA, Tadokoro T, Berens W, Beer JZ, Hearing VJ. Human skin responses to UV radiation: Pigment in the upper epidermis protects against DNA damage in the lower epidermis and facilitates apoptosis. FASEB J. 2010; 20(9):1486–8.

Goding CR. Melanocytes: The new Black. Int J Biochem Cell Biol. 2004; 39(2):275–9.

Kameyama K, Jimenez M, Muller J, Ishida Y, Hearing VJ. Regulation of mammalian melanogenesis by tyrosinase inhibition. Differentiation. 1989; 42(1):28–36.

Schallreuter KU, Kothari S, Chavan B, Spencer JD. Regulation of melanogenesis controversies and new concepts. Exp Dermatol. 2008; 17(5):395–404.

Parvez S, Kang M, Chung HS, Cho C, Hong MC, Shin MK, Bae H. Survey and mechanism of skin depigmenting and lightening agents. Phytother Res. 2006; 20(11):921–34.

Pieroni A, Quave CL, Villanelli ML, Mangino P, Sabbatini G, Santini L, Boccetti T, Profili M, iccioli T, Rampa LG, Antonini G, Girolamini C, Cecchi M, Tomasi M. Ethnopharmacognostic survey on the natural ingredients in folk cosmetics, cosmeceuticals and remedies for healing skin diseases in the inland Marches, Central-Eastern Italy. Journal of Ethnopharmacology. 2004; 91(2-3):331–44.

Mallick CP, Singh MB. Plant enzymology and Histoenzymology. New Delhi: Kalyani publishers; 1980.

Adeniyi SA, Orjiekewe CA, Ehiagbonare JE. Determination of alkaloids and oxalates in some selected food samples in Nigeria. African Journal of Biotechnology. 2009; 8(1):110– 2.

Jansman AJM. Tannins in feedstuffs for simple stomached animals. Nutrition research reviews. 1993; 6:236.

Karioti A, Protopappa A, Megoulas N, Skaltsa H. Identification of tyrosinase inhibitors from Marrubium velutinum and Marrubium cylleneum. Bioorg Med Chem. 2007; 15(7):2708–14.

Rao B. Bioactive phytochemicals in Indian foods and their potential in health promotion and disease prevention. Asia Pacific Journal of clinical nutrition. 2003; 12(1):9–22.

Manohar M. Ayurveda for all. Pustak Mahal. 1st ed. 2002; 146–60.

Sharma MC, Joshi C. Plants used in skin diseases of animals. Natural Product Radiance. 2004; 4:293–9.

Dhami N. Ethnomedicinal uses of plants is Western Terai of Nepal: A case study of Dekhatbhuli VDC of Kanchanpur district. In: Medicinal Plants in Nepal. Jha PK, Karmacharya SB, Chhetry MK, Thapa CB, Shrestha BB, editors. Ecological Society of Nepal; 2008. p. 165–77.

Ahmadvand S, Sariri R. Antimicrobial activity of crude extracts of turnip (Brassica rapa). Journal of Pure and Applied Microbiology. 2008. 0973-7510.

Fleming T. PDR for herbal medicines. Montvale, NJ; 1998.

Kawabata T, Cui MY, Hasegawa T, Takano F, Ohta T. Antiinflammatory and anti-melanogenic steroidal saponin glycosides from Fenugreek (Trigonella foenumgraecum L.) seeds. Planta Med. 2011; 77(7):705–10.

Ali BH, Blunden G. Pharmacological and toxicological properties of Nigella sativa. Phytotherapy Research. 2003; 17(4):299–305.

Agarwal V, Baipaj M. Pharmacognostical and biological studies on senna and its products: An overview. International Journal of Pharma and Biosciences; 2010; 1(2):1–10.

Nadkarni KM. Indian materia medica. Bombay Popular Prakashan. 2009; 1:285–586.

Giri D, Tamta S, Pandey A. A review account on medicinal value of Hedychium spicatum Buch-Ham ex Sm: Vulnerable medicinal plant. J Med Plants Res. 2010; 4(25):2773–7.


  • There are currently no refbacks.