[Effect of Tribulus terrestris extract on melanocyte-stimulating hormone expression in mouse hair follicles]

Nan Fang Yi Ke Da Xue Xue Bao. 2006 Dec;26(12):1777-9.
[Article in Chinese]


Objective: To observe the effect of Tribulus terrestris extract on melanocyte stimulating hormone (MSH) expression in C57BL/6J mouse hair follicles, and investigate the role of Tribulus terrestris extract in activation, proliferation, epidermal migration of dormant hair follicle melanocytes.

Methods: The aqueous extract of Tribulus terrestris was administered orally in specific pathogen-free C57BL/6J mouse at the daily dose equivalent to 1 g/1 kg in adult human, and the expression and distribution of MSH in the mouse hair follicles was observed with immunohistochemistry.

Results: The positivity rate of MSH expression in the hair follicle melanocytes was 75% in mice treated with the extract, significantly higher than the rate of only 18.75% in the control group (P<0.01).

Conclusion: The aqueous extract of Tribulus terrestris can significantly increase MSH expression in the hair follicle melanocytes by activating tyrosinase activity and promoting melanocyte proliferation, melanine synthesis, and epidermal migration of dormant melanocytes.

Publication types

  • English Abstract
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Oral
  • Animals
  • Cell Proliferation / drug effects
  • Female
  • Hair Follicle / cytology
  • Hair Follicle / drug effects*
  • Hair Follicle / metabolism
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Melanocyte-Stimulating Hormones / biosynthesis*
  • Melanocytes / cytology
  • Melanocytes / drug effects
  • Melanocytes / metabolism
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Plant Extracts / administration & dosage
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Random Allocation
  • Tribulus / chemistry*


  • Plant Extracts
  • Melanocyte-Stimulating Hormones