Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity (Jan 2016)

Biofunctional Activities of Equisetum ramosissimum Extract: Protective Effects against Oxidation, Melanoma, and Melanogenesis

  • Pin-Hui Li,
  • Yu-Pin Chiu,
  • Chieh-Chih Shih,
  • Zhi-Hong Wen,
  • Laura Kaodichi Ibeto,
  • Shu-Hung Huang,
  • Chien Chih Chiu,
  • Dik-Lung Ma,
  • Chung-Hang Leung,
  • Yaw-Nan Chang,
  • Hui-Min David Wang

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 2016


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Equisetum ramosissimum, a genus of Equisetaceae, is a medicinal plant that can be separated into ethyl acetate (EA), dichloromethane (DM), n-hexane (Hex), methanol (MeOH), and water extracts. EA extract was known to have potent antioxidative properties, reducing power, DPPH scavenging activity, and metal ion chelating activity. This study compared these five extracts in terms of their inhibiting effects on three human malignant melanomas: A375, A375.S2, and A2058. MTT assay presented the notion that both EA and DM extracts inhibited melanoma growth but did not affect the viabilities of normal dermal keratinocytes (HaCaT) or fibroblasts. Western blot analyses showed that both EA and DM extracts induced overexpression of caspase proteins in all three melanomas. To determine their roles in melanogenesis, this study analyzed their in vitro suppressive effects on mushroom tyrosinase. All extracts except for water revealed moderate suppressive effects. None of the extracts affected B16-F10 cells proliferation. EA extract inhibited cellular melanin production whereas DM extract unexpectedly enhanced cellular pigmentation in B16-F10 cells. Data for modulations of microphthalmia-associated transcription factor, tyrosinase, tyrosinase-related protein 1, and tyrosinase-related protein 2 showed that EA extract inhibited protein expression mentioned above whereas DM extract had the opposite effect. Overall, the experiments indicated that the biofunctional activities of EA extract contained in food and cosmetics protect against oxidation, melanoma, and melanin production.