Synthesis and bioactivity of a conjugate composed of green tea catechins and hyaluronic acid

Fan Lee, Jaehong Lim, Michael R. Reithofer, Su Seong Lee, Joo Eun Chung, Charlotte A.E. Hauser, Motoichi Kurisawa*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


(-)-Epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) is a green tea polyphenol that has several biological activities, including anti-cancer activity and anti-inflammation. Hyaluronic acid (HA) is a naturally-occurring polysaccharide that is widely used as a biomaterial for drug delivery and tissue engineering due to its viscoelastic, biocompatible and biodegradable properties. By conjugating HA with EGCG, the resulting HA-EGCG conjugate is expected to exhibit not only the inherent properties of HA but also the bioactivities of EGCG. Toward this end, we report the synthesis of an amine-functionalized EGCG as an intermediate compound for conjugation to HA. EGCG was reacted with 2,2-diethoxyethylamine (DA) under acidic conditions, forming ethylamine-bridged EGCG dimers. The EGCG dimers were composed of four isomers, which were characterized by HPLC, high-resolution mass spectrometry and NMR spectroscopy. The amine-functionalized EGCG dimers were conjugated to hyaluronic acid (HA) through the formation of amide bonds. HA-EGCG conjugates demonstrated several bioactivities which were not present in unmodified HA, including resistance to hyaluronidase-mediated degradation, inhibition of cell growth and scavenging of radicals. The potential applications of HA-EGCG conjugates are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4462-4472
Number of pages11
Issue number24
StatePublished - Jun 28 2015
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The Royal Society of Chemistry 2015.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Biochemistry
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Organic Chemistry


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