Email updates

Keep up to date with the latest news and content from BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine and BioMed Central.

Open Access Highly Accessed Research article

Inhibition of melanogenesis and antioxidant properties of Magnolia grandiflora L. flower extract

Huey-Chun Huang1, Wan-Yu Hsieh2, Yu-Lin Niu3 and Tsong-Min Chang2*

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Medical Laboratory Science and Biotechnology, China Medical University, No. 91 Hsueh-Shih Road, Taichung, Taiwan, 40402

2 Department of Applied Cosmetology & Master Program of Cosmetic Science, Hung Kuang University, No. 34, Chung-Chie Rd., Shalu, Taichung City, Taiwan, 43302

3 Niuer International Skincare Science Research Institute, 7F, No. 618, Ruiguang Rd., Neihu Dist., Taipei, Taiwan

For all author emails, please log on.

BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine 2012, 12:72  doi:10.1186/1472-6882-12-72

Published: 6 June 2012



Magnolia grandiflora L. flower is wildly used in Asian as a traditional herbal medication. The purpose of the study was to investigate the antimelanogenic and antioxidant properties of Magnolia grandiflora L. flower extract. In the study, the inhibitory effects of M. grandiflora L. flower extract on mushroom tyrosinase, B16F10 intracellular tyrosinase activity and melanin content were determined spectrophotometrically. Meanwhile, the antioxidative capacity of the flower extract was also investigated.


Our results revealed that M. grandiflora L. flower extract inhibit mushroom tyrosinase activity (IC50 =11.1%; v/v), the flower extract also effectively suppressed intracellular tyrosinase activity (IC50 = 13.6%; v/v) and decreased the amount of melanin (IC50 = 25.6%; v/v) in a dose-dependent manner in B16F10 cells. Protein expression level of tyrosinase and tyrosinase-related protein 1 (TRP-1) were also decreased by the flower extract. Additionally, antioxidant capacities such as ABTS+ free radical scavenging activity, reducing capacity and total phenolic content of the flower extract were increased in a dose-dependent pattern.


Our results concluded that M. grandiflora L. flower extract decreased the expression of tyrosinase and TRP-1, and then inhibited melanogenesis in B16F10 cells. The flower extract also show antioxidant capacities and depleted cellular reactive oxygen species (ROS). Hence, M. grandiflora L. flower extract could be applied as a type of dermatological whitening agent in skin care products.

Magnolia grandiflora L; Melanogenesis; Tyrosinase; Melanin; Antioxidant