Pheophorbide a is a chlorophyll metabolic breakdown product. This study investigated the antiwrinkle effect of pheophorbide a (PA) and its derivatives, including pyropheophorbide a (PyroPA) and pyropheophorbide a methyl ester (PyroPA-ME), on ultraviolet (UV) B-stimulated CCD-986sk fibroblasts. PA, PyroPA, and PyroPA-ME effectively suppressed reactive oxygen species accumulation in UVB-exposed CCD-986sk fibroblasts. All three pheophorbides also reduced UVB-induced matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-1 secretion and mRNA expression of MMP-1
, and MMP-9
. Treatment with pheophorbides resulted in increased procollagen synthesis, and this required enhancement of procollagen type I C-peptide content and mRNA expression of collagen type I alpha 1 (COL1A1
) and COL1A2
in CCD-986sk cells. These antiwrinkle effects were more potent with PA and PyroPA than with PyroPA-ME. Furthermore, PA and PyroPA suppressed UVB-induced phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated protein kinase and c-Jun N-terminal kinase but not p38. Moreover, all three pheophorbides inhibited NF-κB p65 phosphorylation. Therefore, these pheophorbides, especially PA and PyroPA, can be used as antiwrinkle agents, and PA- or PyroPA-rich natural resources can be used in functional cosmetics.
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