Print this article
P. 61-68 /


Researchers discover new way to help skin heal faster


After a five-year research, Assistant Professor assistant professor at the LSU AgCenter and the School of Renewable Natural Resources Wei Xu, and his collaborators at Northwestern University discovered a new way to prevent inflammation and to speed up the skin's healing process. Tthey identified the gene regulation pathway, which involves the body's sodium sensor called Nax (scn7a) that triggers inflammation, and they found a way to block it using a nanoparticle-carried small interference RNA, which enables the skin to heal faster.

"This is a really novel pathway we identified. Nobody has ever tried to develop a product that gets at this pathway before," said Wei Xu.

Xu and his colleagues developed a nanoparticle that delivers the RNA that inhibits Nax preventing inflammation. The nanoparticle can be applied to the skin in a cream or lotion.

"I think this is going to be very promising in skin disease treatments", Xu said.

This discovery was based of some assumptions derived from the Xu's post-doctoral research adviser, Dr. Thomas Mustoe's work that showed areas of skin with high hydration heal faster. Combined with the fact that human body holds more than 100 times as much sodium than most other ions, led the researchers to believe that the body's sodium regulators were key components. One sodium channel, Nax, is particularly sensitive to the body's changes in salt concentration. Water loss occurs during many skin disorders, resulting in an increase in extracellular sodium concentration. Professor Xu and his colleagues report that the sodium channel Nax works as a sodium sensor that contributes to epithelial homeostasis. Nax, which is present in multiple epithelial tissues and up-regulated in scars, increases sodium flux and induces the downstream production of mediators of epithelial cell proliferation and inflammation that may lead to scar formation. Indeed, blocking Nax in animal models decreases scarring and atopic dermatitis–like symptoms, suggesting that Nax may contribute to epithelial homeostasis.

Xu applied the DNA microarray technique to screen more than 100,000 genes in the human genome to find the exact gene regulation pathway.

"If we target the very beginning of the pathway, we can control the expression levels of the inflammation factors," he said.


A new hope against the hair loss: the Pharmacologic inhibition of JAK-STAT signaling promotes hair growth

A study published by researchers at Columbia University Medical Center in the online edition of Science Advance reports some evidence that it could be possible restores hair growth by inhibiting a family of enzymes inside hair follicles that are suspended in a resting state, a new study from researchers at Columbia University Medical Center has found. The research was published today in the online edition of Science Advances.

In experiments with mouse and human hair follicles, Angela M. Christiano, PhD, and colleagues found that drugs that inhibit the Janus kinase (JAK) family of enzymes promote rapid and robust hair growth when directly applied to the skin.

As stated in the abstract, “Several forms of hair loss in humans are characterized by the inability of hair follicles to enter the growth phase (anagen) of the hair cycle after being arrested in the resting phase (telogen). Current pharmacologic therapies have been largely unsuccessful in targeting pathways that can be selectively modulated to induce entry into anagen. We show that topical treatment of mouse and human skin with small-molecule inhibitors of the Janus kinase (JAK)–signal transducer and activator of transcription (STAT) pathway results in rapid onset of anagen and subsequent hair growth. We show that JAK inhibition regulates the activation of key hair follicle populations such as the hair germ and improves the inductivity of cultured human dermal papilla cells by controlling a molecular signature enriched in intact, fully inductive dermal papillae. Our findings open new avenues for exploration of JAK-STAT inhibition for promotion of hair growth and highlight the role of this pathway in regulating the activation of hair follicle stem cells.”

Two JAK inhibitors have been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. One is approved for treatment of blood diseases (ruxolitinib) and the other for rheumatoid arthritis (tofacitinib). Both are being tested in clinical trials for the treatment of plaque psoriasis and alopecia areata, an autoimmune disease that causes hair loss.

"What we've found is promising, though we haven't yet shown it is effective for male pattern baldness," Dr. Christiano said. "More work needs to be done to test formulations of JAK inhibitors specially made for the scalp to determine whether they can induce hair growth in humans."


Highest levels of some preservatives found in human cord blood samples

Researchers at SUNY Downstate Medical Center and Arizona State University have published online in the journal Environment International an article titled "Maternal and fetal exposure to parabens in a multiethnic urban U.S. population", which is the first study of the levels of parabens - antibacterial substances used as preservatives  also in cosmetics production - in human cord blood samples. The study found that a group of pregnant women in Brooklyn mainly of Caribbean- and African-American descent had the highest level worldwide of methyl paraben and propyl paraben.

The results were published online in the journal Environment International, in an article titled, "Maternal and fetal exposure to parabens in a multiethnic urban U.S. population."

The article notes that parabens have been used for decades and, at recommended levels, are "generally recognized as safe" by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the European Union. Problem is, parabens have the potential to disrupt the expression of hormones during influential times of development, so it is possible they could affect fetal, child, and even adult health. The authors point out that recent studies have raised awareness for potential health effects, particularly during fetal development and in children younger than six to 12 months of age, a period when detoxification systems are still immature, "and thus leaving the exposed more vulnerable," notes senior author Rolf Halden, PhD, professor and director of the Biodesign Center for Environmental Security at Arizona State University.

According with co-author Laura A. Geer, PhD, MHS, associate professor in the Department of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences in the School of Public Health at SUNY Downstate, "What we know from the study is that parabens are being transferred from pregnant women to their fetuses. This is problematic because parabens have demonstrated endocrine-disrupting potential in animal studies, leading to developmental and reproductive disorders. It is too early to know if these same effects can occur in humans, and if so, at what levels of exposure."

She adds, "I would not characterize these findings as alarming, but rather of concern, since we do not have relevant regulatory limits for these substances. The European Union countries set limits by volume per product, a good starting point. Limiting exposure to these substances is complicated because of their ubiquity in personal care and consumer products. Higher exposure levels in more vulnerable populations, such as in our study, gives further justification for us to answer the questions of what higher levels mean for health."



Psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis symptoms curbed by bariatric surgery

Psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis symptoms were significantly lessened in patients who underwent bariatric, or weight loss, surgery, according to researchers from NYU Langone Medical Center.

According to the study's authors, the findings suggest that losing excess weight may improve symptoms in people who have these lifelong conditions. The NYU Langone researchers believe that obesity may contribute to the risk for development of psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis through fat tissue-driven systemic inflammation.

"Psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis are chronic inflammatory conditions that can be quite uncomfortable and often painful for patients, so any treatment that might reduce symptoms may improve quality of life,"says lead study author Soumya Reddy, MD, an assistant professor of medicine in the division of rheumatology at NYU Langone, and co-director of NYU Langone's Psoriatic Arthritis Center. "Our new study shows that those who shed excess weight could see significant symptomatic relief."

The researchers say excess weight loss may reduce the body-wide inflammation and pain triggered by extreme excesses of fat tissue. They plan to present their findings on Sunday Nov. 8, 2015 at the 2015 ACR/ARHP Annual Meeting in San Francisco.

For the study, Reddy and colleagues reviewed the medical charts of 9,073 weight-loss surgery patients who were treated between 2002 and 2013 at NYU Langone's Weight Management Program. They identified 86 patients who had psoriasis before their operation, 21 of whom were also diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis, and compared their symptoms before and after undergoing bariatric surgery. The research team compared their patients' symptoms from before and after undergoing bariatric surgery. Patients were on average monitored for more than six years, with an average excess weight loss of 46.2 percent body weight.

The researchers found 55 percent of patients with psoriasis and 62 percent of patients with psoriatic arthritis reported improvements in their disease.

Patients who underwent surgery saw significant reductions in their disease severity scores at post-surgical follow-up -- according to a 0 to 10 rating scale -- with disease severity scores in patients with psoriasis dropping from 5.6 to 4.4, and scores falling from 6.4 to 4.5 for those with psoriatic arthritis.

Results were even more pronounced in those with severe disease activity, with scores falling from 7.7 before surgery to 5.7 after for patients with severe psoriasis, and from 8.2 to 4.8 after surgery for patients with severe psoriatic arthritis.

Further analysis showed those who lost the most excess weight a year after surgery showed the biggest improvements in their disease activity. Patients who saw the most improvements had more severe disease at the time of surgery and were of an older age at diagnosis.

"This study highlights the collaborative spirit of academic medicine, and how our rheumatology and bariatric surgery researchers worked together to not only help our patients directly, but inform the medical community at large", says study co-author Jose U. Scher, MD, assistant professor of rheumatology and co-director of the NYU Langone's Psoriatic Arthritis Center. "These findings can be used to identify people who may benefit most from this type of intervention."

The NYU Langone researchers next plan to conduct larger studies to further define their findings and the effects of excess weight loss and bariatric surgery on psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis disease activity.

Psoriasis is a condition that affects 7.5 million Americans, according to the National Psoriasis Foundation. It is estimated that as many as 20 percent of individuals with moderate to severe psoriasis develop psoriatic arthritis in their lifetime. Psoriasis is a chronic autoimmune-related skin condition in which thick, scaly patches appear on the skin. Psoriatic arthritis is similar in presentation -- but also can lead to joint pain.

Treatment requires a coordinated effort by dermatologists and rheumatologists to help manage symptoms such as swelling, inflammation and skin changes.



Nine months after achieving zero non-hazardous waste to landfill across its global network of 242 factories – believed to be a world first - Unilever has announced it has become a zero landfill company in Europe. This means that in addition to manufacturing facilities, no waste from Unilever owned or fully operated premises, logistic operations, distribution centres or offices goes to landfill in Europe. Unilever outlined its ambition to become a zero waste to landfill company in January 2015. The European operation is the first to meet this new target with 63 additional facilities now sending no waste to landfill. Unilever is aiming to become a zero waste company globally around the end of the year and is also continuing to work towards a zero waste value chain. Unilever’s Chief Supply Chain Officer, Pier Luigi Sigismondi said: “Our zero waste to landfill goal is essential to Unilever’s sustainable growth ambitions and we aspire to see an industry wide movement here. In June this year we partnered with peer companies, experts and key stakeholders to get people personally connected with this environmental and social issue. We are convinced that only together can we eliminate waste on an unprecedented scale across the globe. Our European teams have reached an important new milestone and proven that the model and mind-set that drove our factory achievements is repeatable outside of a manufacturing environment. As the world focuses on the United Nations Global Goals - an ambitious set of goals to end extreme poverty, fix inequality and tackle climate change by 2030 – the time for us all to drive more action on waste is now”. Unilever’s President of Europe, Jan Zijderveld added: “We are very proud that all our sites in Europe now send zero waste to landfill. Achieving zero waste company is complex as we do not own or even majority occupy many of the non-manufacturing sites and our teams have invested a lot of energy, shown real entrepreneurship and initiative to overcome multiple challenges. The Unilever Sustainable Living Plan is deeply embedded in the organisation and progressively represented in our brands. With sustainable brands delivering more growth and savings made through greater resource efficiency and better use of materials, the business case for sustainability is becoming increasingly clear”.



Novozymes has announced the launch of Avantec® Amp, an advanced enzyme product that improves yield and throughput in corn ethanol production, while increasing corn oil extraction and significantly reducing the need for several harsh chemicals used in ethanol production. By switching from standard enzyme technology to Avantec Amp, a typical ethanol plant with a capacity of 110 million gallons can make up to $2.5 million a year in additional net profits. “Avantec Amp enables yield improvements and chemical reductions that were previously impossible” says Peter Halling, Vice President – Biofuel, at Novozymes. “It will boost our customers’ bottom line and give them flexibility to adjust their various revenue streams based on market conditions. Ultimately, it will give them a competitive advantage in a challenging market”. Avantec Amp continues the success of the original Avantec®, introduced in 2012, by adding significant new benefits. It combines multiple enzyme activities into one product, and surpasses competing enzyme solutions by squeezing more ethanol from each kernel of corn and enabling increased output from the ethanol plant, thus saving energy and water and increasing return on invested capital. It can also boost corn oil production, an increasingly important revenue stream in the industry, by freeing up oil bound in the corn germ. In addition, Avantec Amp reduces the need for a number of chemicals used to control and accelerate production processes at ethanol plants. Urea, which is used to improve the fermentation of ethanol, can be cut by more than 70%. Surfactants and ammonia, used to extract corn oil and adjust pH levels, can also be significantly reduced. Avantec Amp is the first enzyme product to replace urea and surfactants. “By replacing these chemicals with enzymes you get greater safety for workers and lower costs” says Peter Halling. “When you simplify the recipe, you reduce the risk of errors associated with handling multiple different compounds and you also have less need for storage”.



Clorox Professional Products Company is pleased to announce Clorox Commercial Solutions® Clorox® Disinfecting Wipes won the 2015 ISSA Innovation Award in the Cleaning Agents category. ISSA, the worldwide cleaning industry association, recently recognized Clorox Professional during the ISSA/INTERCLEAN® North America 2015 trade show in Las Vegas, NV. "Clorox® Disinfecting Wipes conveniently tackle a diverse range of commercial cleaning and disinfecting needs to deliver a powerful and cost-efficient solution that allows cleaning professionals to do more in less time," said Jennifer Case, Associate Director of Marketing, Clorox Professional Products Company. "We are honoured to once again be recognized by ISSA and the cleaning industry and this latest win further validates our unyielding commitment to developing innovative product solutions to meet our customer's needs". Clorox® Disinfecting Wipes are Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-registered to kill 99.9 percent of common illness-causing germs including Methicillin-resistant Staphyloccocus aureus (MRSA) and Bordetella pertussis, the organism that can cause whooping cough. In addition to nine new EPA-registered disinfecting claims, Clorox® Disinfecting Wipes now have 12 allergen-removal claims, and offer 10-second sanitization - the fastest contact time available for bacteria. Clorox® Disinfecting Wipes are compliant with OSHA Bloodborne Pathogens Standards, which applies to occupational exposure to blood or other potentially infectious materials. Clorox® Disinfecting Wipes are now available in both economical bulk wipe canisters with 700-count refill packs and in 75-count canisters. The bulk canister comes with 40 percent more wipes and costs 20 percent less per wipe than the previous canister. "Each year, the ISSA Innovation Award Program offers cleaning industry professionals the chance to recognize the products and services they believe demonstrate ingenuity and best meet their needs," said Jonathan Adkins, Director of Digital and Print Media, ISSA. "We congratulate each of this year's winners". Clorox Professional Products Company has a history of its products winning the ISSA Innovation Award. In 2012 and 2013, respectively, Clorox® Hydrogen Peroxide Disinfecting Cleaners and Clorox® Urine Remover won the ISSA Innovation Award cleaning agent categories.



Cosmetics brands and consumers everywhere are looking to the East for the next big thing, and changing their approach to daily face care. To meet the Asianification trend AAK Personal Care has developed a new concept of face care rituals called Inspirasian. It consists of six steps and formulas featuring the multi-functional emollient ester Lipex SheaLight and other natural based functional ingredients. AAK Personal Care will hold a presentation during the innovation seminar program at in-cosmetics Asia in Bangkok. The session is called “Asianification or Westification? Sustainable tools for new face care rituals” and is presented by Jarek Tabor, Technical Manager at AAK Personal Care. It takes place on November 5, 12:00-12:30, at the Innovation Seminar Theatre. Lipex SheaLight is an eco-designed emollient ester for all types of face care formulas and functionality – from cleansing and nourishing, to protecting and correcting. It is well suited to meet Asian demands for lightweight textures, fast absorbing products, bright colours and comfortable use in any climate zone. Please visit AAK Personal Care at in-cosmetics Asia to learn more about Lipex SheaLight and the new face care rituals. You will find us in stand K10 together with Bronson and Jacobs International Co, Ltd.



Procter & Gamble Professional™ earned the inaugural "Seal of Approval" from IEHA for its Spic and Span® Disinfecting All-Purpose Spray and Glass Cleaner, which was field-tested and then approved for use in assisted living facilities by IEHA members. This is the first certification awarded from IEHA’s Field Test program, which enables members to test and report on cleaning products. IEHA awarded the Seal after members evaluated the quality and effectiveness of Spic and Span in cleaning and disinfecting assisted living environments. For 85 years, IEHA has served Executive Housekeepers, Environmental Services Directors and other facility management professionals with access to tools, products and educational resources to enhance their careers. It is currently hosting its 49th Annual Convention in Las Vegas. IEHA members who direct housekeeping programs in assisted living settings were invited to test Spic and Span and evaluate its effectiveness in enabling a simpler approach to cleaning and disinfecting dry surfaces. Spic and Span is a hospital-grade disinfectant with a 3-in-1 formula that helps improve productivity by simplifying cleaning and replacing three products with one. Field testers incorporated the product into their existing cleaning routines and the majority agreed that Spic and Span:

•        Is an effective cleaner and disinfectant

•        Simplified cleaning and disinfecting hard surfaces

•        Improved productivity or lessened cleaning time

•        Provided visibly cleaner results; and

•        Is preferred over other products testers used to clean hard surfaces in the past. All testers (100%) responded that they would recommend the product to others and would recommend it specifically for use in assisted living settings.

"IEHA is excited about this program as it's a win for both our members and the vendors who serve them," said Michael Patterson, IEHA president elect. "The best aspect of the Seal of Approval program is that it helps our members identify products that meet a standard level of excellence. They know when they see an IEHA Seal of Approval product, it has been rigorously tested by our members and will stand up in the toughest of environments and, in this case, meet the stringent disinfection standards of an assisted living facility".



European chemical output grew just 0.2 per cent during the first seven months of 2015 compared to the same period of 2014, according to the latest Cefic Chemicals Trends Report, while producer prices fell 4.6 per cent, year-on-year. Sales were down 3.1 per cent during January-July 2015, compared to the same period of 2014. Latest monthly data show output growth of 0.3 per cent in July 2015 compared with July 2014, while EU chemicals prices plunged 3.0 per cent. The EU net trade surplus was €22.1 billion during the first half of 2015, up by €773 million compared to the same period one year ago.


SILABSKIN®, proven expertise in reconstructed 3D biological models

For several years, SILAB Research has been working on the development, validation and culturing of human cells in 3D. These multi-layer in vitro models, known either as reconstructed epidermises or reconstructed skins, are an essential factor in proving the efficacy of the cosmetic natural active ingredients sold by the company. The methodology used is robust, and SILAB complies with three levels of requirements: traceability of the biological material, internal control of skills and methods, and the quality and reproducibility of the models. This requires standardized protocols and a suitable environment, combined with state-of-theart equipment and high-tech analyses such as transcriptomics. Thanks to this expertise, the SILAB in vitro specialists, who are regularly trained in new technologies, have been able to develop innovative 3D models to accompany the launch of new cosmetic active ingredients, under normal and modified conditions that mimic a specific biological reality (aging, photoaging, nutritional deficiency, chemical aggression, inflammation, etc.). This new generation of complex models represents the expected predictive link between in vitro studies on cell mono-layers (keratinocytes, fibroblasts, etc.) and measurements taken in vivo on volunteers. The company now clearly displays its expertise through its own SILABSKIN® 3D biological models registered trademark. It continues to create new concepts independently, in line with its original strategy of internally developing the latest know-how in its laboratories, for the use of research and its clients.



Already committed to reduce by 60% the greenhouse gas emissions from its production activities, the Group announced its ambition to become a “carbon balanced” company by 2020. In partnership with its suppliers, L'Oréal will work within its sustainable sourcing of raw materials projects in order to capture carbon in quantity equivalent to the greenhouse gas emissions related to its business. For example, in Burkina Faso where almost 22,000 women harvest the nuts used to produce shea butter, improved cook stoves will be installed, which consume less wood. This will contribute to reduce the carbon footprint of this activity, to fight deforestation and to generate economic savings for producers.