Nutricosmetic effects of Asparagus officinalis: a potent matrix metalloproteinase-1 inhibitor

Sci Rep. 2021 Apr 22;11(1):8772. doi: 10.1038/s41598-021-88340-2.


This study aimed to investigate the nutricosmetic effect of Asparagus officinalis extracts. The tip and spear of A. officinalis were successively extracted with 95% ethanol. The rutin, phenolic, and flavonoid contents of A. officinalis extracts were investigated. The antioxidant activities were determined by 2,2-azinobis (3-ethylbenzothiazoline-6-sulphonic acid) and a ferric reducing antioxidant power assay. Matrix metalloproteinase-1 (MMP-1), elastase, and hyaluronidase inhibition were determined by in vitro enzyme reaction assay. The cytotoxicity was analyzed on peripheral blood mononuclear cellss. Findings revealed that drying temperature and drying duration had significant effects on the chemical composition and biological activity of A. officinalis extract. A. officinalis tips dried at 50 °C for 24 h contained the (significantly) highest flavonoid and rutin content. The most potent extract was from A. officinalis spears since it possessed the (significantly) highest MMP-1, elastase, and hyaluronidase inhibition rates of 83.4 ± 1.5%, 70.4 ± 4.1%, and 75.2 ± 1.0%, respectively. Interestingly, at the same concentration, the A. officinalis spear extract was more potent in MMP-1 inhibition than oleanolic acid and epigallocatechin gallate, the well-known natural MMP-1 inhibitors. The results show that A. officinalis extract is an attractive source of natural anti-skin-wrinkle ingredients.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Antioxidants / pharmacology
  • Asparagus Plant / chemistry*
  • Cosmetics*
  • Dietary Supplements*
  • Matrix Metalloproteinase 1 / drug effects*
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Protease Inhibitors / pharmacology*
  • Skin Aging / drug effects


  • Antioxidants
  • Cosmetics
  • Plant Extracts
  • Protease Inhibitors
  • MMP1 protein, human
  • Matrix Metalloproteinase 1