Microphthalmia-associated transcription factor (MITF) is inducible in response to cAMP through the cAMP-responsive element-binding protein (CREB) and plays a pivotal role in the melanocyte-specific expression of tyrosinase or tyrosinase-related proteins (TRPs) for melanin biosynthesis. Manassantin A from Saururus chinensis inhibits cAMP-induced melanin production in B16 melanoma cells. Here, we focused on molecular basis of the antimelanogenic activity. Manassantin A consistently inhibited the cAMP elevator 3-isobutyl-1-methylxanthine (IBMX)- or dibutyryl cAMP-induced melanin production in B16 cells or in melan-a melanocytes by down-regulating the expression of tyrosinase or TRP1 gene. Moreover, manassantin A suppressed MITF induction through IBMX-activated CREB pathway, directly inhibiting the Ser-133 phosphorylation of CREB. However, manassantin A did not affect IBMX-increased cAMP levels in these cells but also other cAMP-dependent melanogenic pathways through post-translational modifications of MITF. This putative molecular mechanism of manassantin A in the inhibition of melanin production suggests its pharmacological potential in skin hyperpigmentation.
- Antimelanogenic activity
- CAMP-responsive element binding protein
- Manassantin A
- Microphthalmia-associated transcription factor