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The use of global gene expression profiling, also known as transcriptomics or genomics, provides a means to identify key pathways affected in ageing skin that can be improved with appropriate cosmetic compounds. Aspects of skin ageing that can be addressed include matrix production, barrier, lipid synthesis, antioxidant capacity and hyperpigmentation. Gene expression profiling together with in vitro human skin cell cultures for compound screening and verification have led to the identification of cosmetic compounds and an understanding of the biological effects of compounds such as niacinamide, Pal-KTTKS, hexamidine, retinyl propionate and sodium dehydroacetate. In addition, understanding of the decreased antioxidant capacity of aged skin has led to the identification of new antiageing ingredients, olive-derived fatty acid ethoxylates, which have been shown to restore antioxidant enzymes in skin keratinocytes and fibroblasts. Gene expression profiling of age spots has also provided an understanding of the role of undecylenoyl phenylalanine in reducing melanin production by an adrenergic receptor mechanism in melanocytes. The use of these compounds in cosmetic formulations for skin care can aid improvements in the appearance of aged skin, including the improved appearance of fine lines, wrinkles and age spots. © 2012 The Authors. BJD © 2012 British Association of Dermatologists.


R Osborne, T Hakozaki, T Laughlin, D R Finlay. Application of genomics to breakthroughs in the cosmetic treatment of skin ageing and discoloration. The British journal of dermatology. 2012 Jun;166 Suppl 2:16-9

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PMID: 22670614

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