The ethanolic extract of the root of Piper methysticum was found to inhibit melanogenesis in MSH-activated B16 melanoma cells. Flavokawains B and C were isolated from this extract based on their anti-melanogenesis activity and found to inhibit melanogenesis with IC50 values of 7.7μM and 6.9μM, respectively. Flavokawain analogs were synthesized through a Claisen-Schmidt condensation of their corresponding acetophenones and benzaldehydes and were evaluated in terms of their tyrosinase inhibitory and anti-melanogenesis activities. Compound 1b was the most potent of these with an IC50 value of 2.3μM in melanogenesis inhibition assays using MSH-activated B16 melanoma cells.
Keywords: Chalcones; Flavokawain B and C; Melanogenesis; Piper methysticum.
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