Extracellular vesicles from korean codium fragile and sargassum fusiforme negatively regulate melanin synthesis

Bohee Jang, Heesung Chung, Hyejung Jung, Hyun Kuk Song, Eunhye Park, Hack Sun Choi, Kyuhyun Jung, Han Choe, Sanghwa Yang, Eok Soo Oh

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12 Scopus citations


Although various marine ingredients have been exploited for the development of cosmetic products, no previous study has examined the potential of seaweed extracellular vesicles (EV) in such applications. Our results revealed that EV from Codium fragile and Sargassum fusiforme effectively decreased α-MSH-mediated melanin synthesis in MNT-1 human melanoma cells, associated with downregulation of MITF (microphthalmia-associated transcription factor), tyrosinase and TRP1 (tyrosinase-related proteins 1). The most effective inhibitory concentrations of EV were 250 μg/ml for S. fusiforme and 25 μg/ml for C. fragile, without affecting the viability of MNT-1 cells. Both EV reduced melanin synthesis in the epidermal basal layer of a three-dimensional model of human epidermis. Moreover, the application of the prototype cream containing C. fragile EV (final 5 μg/ml) yielded 1.31% improvement in skin brightness in a clinical trial. Together, these results suggest that EV from C. fragile and S. fusiforme reduce melanin synthesis and may be potential therapeutic and/or supplementary whitening agents.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)736-745
Number of pages10
JournalMolecules and Cells
Issue number10
StatePublished - 31 Oct 2021

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© 2021, Korean Society for Molecular and Cellular Biology. All rights reserved.


  • Extracellular vesicles
  • Melanin synthesis
  • Seaweed
  • Skin epidermis


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