Melanin is considered a bio-inspired dermo-cosmetic component due to its high UV absorption and antioxidant activity. Among various melanin sources, fungal melanin is a promising candidate for sunscreen because of its sustainability and scalability; however, quantitative assessment of its function has not yet been sufficiently explored. In this study, melanin samples derived fromAmorphotheca resinaewere prepared, followed by the evaluation of their sunscreen performance, antioxidant activity, and cytotoxicity. Melanin-blended cream was prepared by blending a melanin suspension and a pure cream. The cream showed anin vitrosun protection factor value of 2.5 when the pigment content was 5%. The cream showed a critical wavelength of approximately 388 nm and a UVA/UVB ratio of more than 0.81, satisfying the broad-spectrum sunscreen requirement. Oxygen radical absorbance capacity assays indicated that fungal melanin had antioxidant activity similar to ascorbic acid but higher than reduced glutathione. Fungal melanin had no statistically significant cytotoxicity to human keratinocyte cell lines until 72 h of exposure, even at a concentration of 4 mg mL−1. Consequently, melanin pigment can be used as a biocompatible broad-spectrum sunscreen with high antioxidant activity and as a practical alternative in dermo-cosmetic formulations.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This study was supported by a Korea University Research Grant.
© The Royal Society of Chemistry 2021.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Chemical Engineering(all)