Humectants and their effects on skin barrier function - a mechanistic approach
||Cathrine Albér, Vitaly Kocherbitov, Marie Lodén Eviderm Institute AB, Robert Corkery YKI AB and Ulf Åkerström ACO Hud Nordic AB
||Tautgirdas Ruzgas, Sebastian Björklund Lunds universitet, Emma Sparr Lunds universitet, Krister Thuresson Hemocue AB, Lars Wadsö Lunds universitet
||KK and Malmö University
||2010-01-01 -- 2014-12-31
||Biofilms Research Center for Biointerfaces
||Faculty of Health and Society, The Department of Biomedical Science
Eczema is probably the most common cutaneous affliction, where the atopic eczema affects 15 and 20% among school children in the North Europe. Recent data suggest atopic eczema to be a primary disorder of stratum corneum barrier failure. However, the increasing prevalence of barrier diseases during a rather short period of time suggests factors in the environment to promote the rise rather than genetic changes. Since cosmetics and other topical formulations come in closer contact with our body than many other products, it makes sense to consider their impact on the barrier function. The mechanism by which moisturizers affect skin barrier function is not known and they usually contain lipids and humectants in order to diminish the clinical symptoms of dryness. Furthermore, the link between skin hydration / dryness and barrier function is neither fully understood. In a resent work (Björklund 2010) we demonstrated that a water gradient can be used to regulate transport of drugs across the skin. It was shown that the permeability of the skin barrier increases abruptly at low water gradients, corresponding to high degrees of skin hydration, and that this effect is reversible. With this background we pose the question for the current project; How do humectants work and what effects may they have on skin lipid structure and barrier permeability when used as moisturizing agents?
The project involve ACO Hud Nordic AB, Eviderm AB, YKI AB and Malmö University (Mah), and combines expertise in colloidal science with long experience in in vitro methodology and large resources and skills for performing clinical trials. All partners mutually agree on gaining increased understanding on how humectants work in skin to be the prime goal of the project, with 10 tentative papers and milestones listed.
The primary goal for ACO is to increase the scientific know-how in the skin barrier-improving formulations to turn the development more evidence-based. Eviderm will gain important insights into the interaction between humectants and the skin, which will be used to develop their consultancy business. YKI has identified biomembrane research as a strategic core competence that should be strengthened on the basis of in house critical mass in the area of lipid self-assembly and instrumental expertise on lipids and self-assembled systems. Mah would like to convey their extensive knowledge in lipid research, drug delivery, in vitro characterisation and responding biomembranes to the surrounding society.
The project is a part of the large academic research environment at Malmö University, primarily constituted by the profiles “Biointerfaces” and “Oral Health”, and the University spanning research program “Biofilms- Research Center for Biointerfaces”. It also specifically relate to our MSc program in Biomedical Technology.