Nat Prod Sci.  2021 Mar;27(1):28-35. 10.20307/nps.2021.27.1.28.

Anti-inflammatory, Anti-glycation, Anti-tyrosinase and CDK4 Inhibitory Activities of Alaternin (=7-Hydroxyemodin)

  • 1Department of Food and Life Sciences, Pukyoung National University, Busan 48513, Republic of Korea
  • 2Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition, Jeonbuk National University, Jeonju 54896, Republic of Korea


The aim of this study was to anatomize the therapeutic potential of alaternin (=7-hydroxyemodin) against inflammation, advanced glycation end products (AGEs) formation, tyrosinase, and two cyclin-dependent kinases (CDKs), CDK2 and CDK4, and compare its potency with emodin. Alaternin showed lower cytotoxicity and higher dose-dependent inhibition against lipopolysaccharide (LPS) induced nitric oxide (NO) production with half maximal inhibitory concentration (IC 50 ) of 18.68 µM. Similarly, alaternin efficaciously inhibited biotransformation of fluorescent AGEs and amyloid cross-β structure on the bovine serum albumin (BSA)-glucose-fructose system, five times more than emodin. Interestingly, alaternin also showed selective activity against CDK4 at 170 µM, whereas emodin inhibited both CDK2 and CDK4 at a concentration of 17 and 380 µM respectively. In addition, alaternin showed dose-dependent inhibitory activity against mushroom tyrosinase with inhibition percentage of 35.84 % at 400 µM. Altogether, alaternin with pronounced inhibition against inflammatory mediator (NO), glycated products formation, and targeted inhibition towards CDK4 receptor can be taken as an important candidate to target multiple diseases.


Alaternin; inflammation; tyrosinase; AGEs; CDK4; RAW 264.7
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