Ceramide PC102 inhibits melanin synthesis via proteasomal degradation of microphthalmia-associated transcription factor and tyrosinase.

Molecular and cellular biochemistry

PubMedID: 23203344

Jeong HS, Choi HR, Yun HY, Baek KJ, Kwon NS, Park KC, Kim DS. Ceramide PC102 inhibits melanin synthesis via proteasomal degradation of microphthalmia-associated transcription factor and tyrosinase. Mol Cell Biochem. 2013;375(1-2):81-7.
A few types of ceramide are reported to decrease melanin synthesis. In the present study, we examined the effects of an artificial ceramide analog, PC102, on melanogenesis using a spontaneously immortalized melanocyte cell line (Mel-Ab). PC102 is currently used as a moisturizing additive in a variety of cosmetics. Our data showed that PC102 inhibited melanin production and tyrosinase activity in a dose-dependent manner, but did not directly affect tyrosinase activity. Microphthalmia-associated transcription factor (MITF), tyrosinase, and ß-catenin protein levels decreased after 48 h of PC102 treatment. In contrast, PC102 did not decrease MITF, tyrosinase, and ß-catenin mRNA levels. Therefore, we investigated whether the decrease in MITF and tyrosinase by PC102 is due to proteasomal degradation. MG132, a proteasomal inhibitor, completely abolished tyrosinase downregulation due to PC102 and partially reduced the downregulation of MITF and ß-catenin due to PC102. Moreover, MG132 abrogated the inhibition of melanin synthesis by PC102. Taken together, our data suggest that PC102 may inhibit melanin synthesis through MITF and tyrosinase degradation.