The combined effects of extracts containing carotenoids and vitamins E and C on growth and pigmentation of cultured human melanocytes

N. Smit, J. Vicanova, P. Cramers, H. Vrolijk, S. Pavel

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Abstract

The combined effects of extracts containing carotenoids and vitamins E and C on growth and pigmentation of cultured human melanocytes.

Smit N, Vicanova J, Cramers P, Vrolijk H, Pavel S.

Department of Clinical Chemistry, Leiden University Medical Centre, Leiden, The Netherlands. N.Smit@lumc.nl

In the present study, we investigated the effects of tomato extract (TE) containing lycopene and palm fruit extract (PE) rich in carotenoids on the growth and pigmentation of melanocyte cultures of Caucasian origin. The extracts were tested at different concentrations and in combination with vitamins E and C. Melanocytes with basic and increased (tyrosine-induced) pigmentation were treated in short-term and long-term experiments. Prevention of UVA-induced DNA damage was studied by using the comet assay. Melanocytes with stimulated melanin production showed reduced growth. Incubation of the cells with TE/PE (20/4 microg/ml) in combination with 35 microM vitamin E and 100 microM vitamin C (COMB 20/4) reduced this growth inhibition, especially in the long-term cultures. Increased production of melanin pigment was obtained when the cells were treated with 2.5 x and 10 x higher concentrations of the TE/PE and the same concentration of vitamins E and C (COMB 50/10 and 200/40). Reduced DNA damage was found after UVA irradiation in cells preincubated with COMB 50/10. The results indicate that the presence of carotenoids from TE and PE in combination with vitamins E and C may influence growth and pigmentation in melanocyte monocultures. Depending on the concentration of the carotenoid mixtures, their presence may provide some protection against the melanogenic intermediates and/or exogenous DNA damage. 2004 S. Karger AG, Basel
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)238-245
Number of pages7
JournalSkin Pharmacology and Physiology
Volume17
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2004

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