An Ocimum basilicum Extract Containing Rosmarinic Acid Restores the Disruption of Collagen Fibers Caused by Repetitive UVA Irradiation of Dermal Fibroblasts

J Oleo Sci. 2020 Nov 1;69(11):1487-1495. doi: 10.5650/jos.ess20129. Epub 2020 Oct 15.


Photoaged skin is characterized by the appearance of pigmented spots such as solar lentigos, deep wrinkles and sags, and progresses due to chronic sun exposure. Among the wavelengths of sunlight, UVA is responsible for the appearance of wrinkles and sags that originate from structural alterations in the dermis of photoaged skin such as the depletion of collagen fibers. Thus, improving and restoring collagen fibers is an effective approach to reduce skin photoaging and maintain a youthful appearance. This study was conducted to evaluate the potential of an extract of Ocimum basilicum (OC), which contains rosmarinic acid (RA), as an anti-photoaging material focusing on the capacity to restore collagen fibers that are disrupted due to intracellular oxidative stress. In spite of their relatively low capacities for chemical scavenging of reactive oxygen species (ROS), both OC and RA showed efficient removal of biological oxidative stress by reducing levels of intracellular ROS and carbonylated proteins (CPs) in fibroblasts following exposure to single or repetitive UVA irradiations. Fibroblasts irradiated with repetitive UVA as a model for chronic sun-exposed cells showed significant increases in matrix metalloproteinase-1 and decreases in type I collagen synthesis and formed reduced numbers of collagen fibers. Since both OC and RA restored the adverse phenomena caused by repetitive UVA irradiation, we conclude that OC containing RA is an effective anti-photoaging material.

Keywords: MMP-1; UVA; collagen fiber; fibroblast.

MeSH terms

  • Cells, Cultured
  • Cinnamates / isolation & purification
  • Cinnamates / pharmacology*
  • Collagen / metabolism*
  • Collagen / radiation effects*
  • Depsides / isolation & purification
  • Depsides / pharmacology*
  • Dermis / cytology*
  • Fibroblasts / metabolism*
  • Fibroblasts / pathology
  • Fibroblasts / radiation effects*
  • Humans
  • Ocimum basilicum / chemistry*
  • Oxidative Stress / drug effects
  • Plant Extracts / isolation & purification
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Reactive Oxygen Species / metabolism
  • Rosmarinic Acid
  • Skin Aging / drug effects*
  • Skin Aging / pathology
  • Ultraviolet Rays / adverse effects*


  • Cinnamates
  • Depsides
  • Plant Extracts
  • Reactive Oxygen Species
  • Collagen