We previously reported the inhibitory potentials of momilactones A (MA) and B (MB) against key enzymes related to type 2 diabetes and obesity. In this study, antioxidant and anti-skin-aging activities of MA and MB were investigated and compared with tricin, a well-known antioxidant and antiaging flavonoid in rice. MA, MB, and tricin were purified from rice husk by column chromatography and their biological activities were subsequently assayed by in vitro trials. The contents of MA, MB, and tricin of different commercial rice cultivars in Japan were quantified and confirmed by ultra-performance liquid chromatography-electrospray ionization-mass spectrometry (UPLC-ESI-MS) and high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) analyses. The antioxidant assays revealed a synergistic activity of the mixture MA and MB (MAB, 1:1, v/v). In addition, in 2,2’-azino-bis (ABTS) assay, IC50 values of MAB (0.3 mg/mL) and tricin (0.3 mg/mL) was 4-fold and 9-fold greater than that of individual MB (1.3 mg/mL) or MA (2.8 mg/mL), respectively. The in vitro enzymatic assays on pancreatic elastase and tyrosinase indicated that MA and MB were potential to relief skin wrinkles and freckles. In detail, MA exerted higher inhibition on both enzymatic activities (30.9 and 37.6% for elastase and tyrosinase inhibition, respectively) than MB (18.5 and 12.6%) and MAB (32.0 and 19.7%) at a concentration of 2.0 mg/mL. Notably, MA and the mixture MAB exhibited stronger inhibitions on elastase and tyrosinase in comparison with tricin and vanillin. MA, MB, and tricin in rice are potential to develop cosmetics as well as supplements for skin aging treatments.
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