BMC complementary and alternative medicine

Protective effect of AVS073, a polyherbal formula, against UVA-induced melanogenesis through a redox mechanism involving glutathione-related antioxidant defense.

PMID 23826868


Ayurved Siriraj Brand Wattana formula (AVS073), a Thai herbal formula, has traditionally been used for health promotion and prevention of age-related problems. Ultraviolet A (UVA) is recognized to play a vital role in stimulation of melanin synthesis responsible for abnormal skin pigmentation possibly mediated by photooxidative stress. We thus aimed to study the inhibitory effect of AVS073 extracts on UVA-induced melanogenesis via a redox mechanism involving glutathione (GSH) synthesis and glutathione S-transferase (GST) using human melanoma (G361) cell culture. The standardization of AVS073 extracts was carried out by TLC and UHPLC to obtain fingerprinting profiles of the formula, which identified several phenolic compounds including gallic acid (GA) in the formula. Antimelanogenic actions of AVS073 (up to 60 μg/ml) and GA (up to 10 μg/ml) were investigated by measuring tyrosinase activity and mRNA as well as melanin level in G361 cells irradiated with UVA. Moreover, antioxidant actions of the herbal formula and GA were determined by evaluating oxidant formation and modulation of GSH-related antioxidant defenses including GSH content, GST activity and mRNA level of γ-glutamate cysteine ligase catalytic (γ-GCLC) and modifier (γ-GCLM) subunit and GST. AVS073 extracts and GA, used as a reference compound, suppressed UVA-augmented tyrosinase activity and mRNA and melanin formation. In addition, pretreatment with AVS073 and GA was able to inhibit cellular oxidative stress, GSH depletion, GST inactivation and downregulation of γ-GCLC, γ-GCLM and GST mRNA in G361 cells exposed to UVA radiation. AVS073 formula exerted antimelanogenic effects possibly through improving the redox state by upregulation of GSH and GST. Moreover, pharmacological activity of the polyherbal formula would be attributed to combined action of different phenolic compounds present in the formula.