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Cyanobacterial metabolites as a source of sunscreens and moisturizers: a comparison with current synthetic compounds
European Journal of Phycology, Volume: 52, Issue: 1, Pages: 43 - 56
Swansea University Author: Carole Llewellyn
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DOI (Published version): 10.1080/09670262.2016.1214882
The recognition of the harmful effects of ultraviolet radiation on the skin has led to the commercial development of inorganic and synthetic organic UV filters that can attenuate the negative effects of sunlight exposure. In addition, chemical moisturizers are extensively used in cosmetic products t...
|Published in:||European Journal of Phycology|
Taylor and Francis
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The recognition of the harmful effects of ultraviolet radiation on the skin has led to the commercial development of inorganic and synthetic organic UV filters that can attenuate the negative effects of sunlight exposure. In addition, chemical moisturizers are extensively used in cosmetic products to improve the ability of skin to retain water. Whilst these chemicals have clear beneficial qualities, they may also have adverse effects such as contact sensitivity, oestrogenicity and even tumorigenic effects on human skin. Furthermore, the accumulation of such chemicals in the aquatic environment could be potentially harmful. Consequently, there is interest in exploiting safer alternatives derived from biological sources, especially from photosynthetic organisms such as cyanobacteria that have developed mechanisms for coping with high UV irradiation and desiccation. In order to overcome the detrimental effects of UV radiation, these microorganisms produce UV screening compounds such as mycosporine-like amino acids and scytonemin, which are good candidates as alternatives to current synthetic UV filters. In addition, extracellular substances produced by some extremophilic species living in hyper-arid habitats have a high water retention capacity and could be used in cosmetic products as moisturizers. In this review, we present an overview of the literature describing the potential of cyanobacterial metabolites as an alternative source for sunscreens and moisturizers.
: extracellular polymeric substances, moisturizer, mycosporine-like amino acid, personal care products, scytonemin, sunscreen
College of Science