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Biomacromolecules. 2004 Mar-Apr;5(2):474-9.

New tyrosinase inhibitors, (+)-catechin-aldehyde polycondensates.

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Department of Materials Chemistry, Graduate School of Engineering, Kyoto University, Kyoto 615-8510, Japan.


In this study, new tyrosinase inhibitors, (+)-catechin-aldehyde polycondensates, have been developed. Tyrosinase is a copper-containing enzyme that catalyzes the hydroxylation of a monophenol (monophenolase activity) and the oxidation of an o-diphenol (diphenolase activity). In the measurement of tyrosinase inhibition activity, (+)-catechin acted as substrate and cofactor of tyrosinase. On the other hand, the polycondensates inhibited the tyrosine hydroxylation and L-DOPA oxidation by chelation to the active site of tyrosinase. The UV-visible spectrum of a mixture of tyrosinase and the polycondensate exhibited a characteristic shoulder peak ascribed to the chelation of the polycondensate to the active site of tyrosinase. Furthermore, circular dichroism measurement showed a small red shift of the band due to the interaction between tyrosinase and the polycondensate. These data support that the polycondensate acts as an inhibitor of tyrosinase.

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