Photoprotective and toxicological activities of extracts from the Antarctic moss Sanionia uncinata

Pharmacogn Mag. 2015 Jan-Mar;11(41):38-43. doi: 10.4103/0973-1296.149701.


Background: The Antarctic moss Sanionia uncinata (Hedw.) Loeske has shown high ultraviolet (UV)-absorbers content after exposition to high levels of UV-B radiation and can be an important source of antioxidants.

Objective: The aim was to investigate photoprotection and mutagenicity by the aqueous extract (AE) and hydroethanolic extract (HE) from the Antarctic moss S. uncinata.

Materials and methods: Photoprotective activities were determined through survival curves of Escherichia coli strains, after UV irradiation in an aqueous solution of thymine and in vitro sun protection factor (SPF). The Salmonella/microsome assays were applied to assess the mutagenicity.

Results: Both extracts induced photoprotection against UV-C radiation. The AE showed a higher protection than the hydroethanolic one against UV-induced thymine dimerization. The SPFs were low in both extracts. In association to benzophenone-3 a significant increase in the SPF was detected for the AE, and a significant decrease was induced by the HE. No mutagenicity was found in the both extracts. Furthermore, it was observed absence of cytotoxicity.

Conclusion: Water-extractable compounds seem to contribute on photoprotection of this Antarctic moss.

Keywords: Moss; mutagenicity; photoprotection; sun protection factor; thymine-dimer inhibition.