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Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology
Volume 2012, Article ID 952452, 9 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2012/952452
Research Article

Depigmenting Effect of Kojic Acid Esters in Hyperpigmented B16F1 Melanoma Cells

1Department of Bioprocess Technology, Faculty of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Sciences, Universiti Putra Malaysia, 43400 Serdang, Malaysia
2Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Sciences, Universiti Putra Malaysia, 43400 Serdang, Malaysia
3Institute of Bioscience, Universiti Putra Malaysia, 43400 Serdang, Malaysia

Received 14 May 2012; Revised 21 June 2012; Accepted 22 June 2012

Academic Editor: Kapil Mehta

Copyright © 2012 Ahmad Firdaus B. Lajis et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

The depigmenting effect of kojic acid esters synthesized by the esterification of kojic acid using Rhizomucor miehei immobilized lipase was investigated in B16F1 melanoma cells. The depigmenting effect of kojic acid and kojic acid esters was evaluated by the inhibitory effect of melanin formation and tyrosinase activity on alpha-stimulating hormone- (α-MSH-) induced melanin synthesis in B16F1 melanoma cells. The cellular tyrosinase inhibitory effect of kojic acid monooleate, kojic acid monolaurate, and kojic acid monopalmitate was found similar to kojic acid at nontoxic doses ranging from 1.95 to 62.5 μg/mL. However, kojic acid monopalmitate gave slightly higher inhibition to melanin formation compared to other inhibitors at doses ranging from 15.63 to 62.5 μg/mL. Kojic acid and kojic acid esters also show antioxidant activity that will enhance the depigmenting effect. The cytotoxicity of kojic acid esters in B16F1 melanoma cells was significantly lower than kojic acid at high doses, ranging from 125 and 500 μg/mL. Since kojic acid esters have lower cytotoxic effect than kojic acid, it is suggested that kojic acid esters can be used as alternatives for a safe skin whitening agent and potential depigmenting agents to treat hyperpigmentation.