Thursday, June 13, 2013

Anti-Aging & Anti-Wrinkle Agents

The study of skin aging focuses on two main streams of interest: the esthetic problem and its 
management and the biological problem of aging in terms of microscopic, biochemical, and molecular changes. 

The skin and hair are subject to intrinsic or physiologic aging, and extrinsic or premature aging due to external factors. Intrinsic factors are related to individual genetic and epigenetic mechanisms with inter-individual variation. 

Extrinsic factors that are well-established causes for skin aging include ultraviolet radiation of the sun rays and cigarette smoking. 
Therefore, primary prevention starts with sun protection and avoidance of cigarette smoking. 
Secondary prevention includes the use of sun protecting agents, dermo-cosmetic substances, and anti-aging compounds. 

Finally, tertiary anti-aging measures include minimally invasive cosmetic procedures such as chemical peels, microderm-abrasion, soft tissue fillers, non-ablative laser rejuvenation, radio-frequency techniques and botulinum toxin. 

Targets of Anti-Aging Compounds Modern anti-aging preparations feature a large variety of active ingredients against skin aging. 

Most of these ingredients are based on recent findings that in aging the balance between collagen synthesis and collagen fragmentation is altered. 
Environmental factors inducing oxidative stress and decreased estrogen levels during menopause are important factors for such changes in the connective tissue of the skin. 
Hence, the major targets of anti-aging agents are oxidative stress and collagen metabolism. 

Iaddition, as it is known that a well-moisturized skin is less prone to oxidative injuries and premature aging, moisturizing agents form another important part of anti-aging agents. 
Nowadays, there are several instrumental, clinical and experimental (e.g. cell culture) methods available that can be used to assess the effect of such agents. For example, the efficacy of antioxidants can be reliably determined by clinical micro inflammatory models which assess the ability of a compound to reduce small oxidative skin injuries. 

Natural & Synthetic Compounds 
Over 60 botanicals are marketed in cosmeceutical formulations. The most important botanicals pertaining to cosmeceutical use include teas, soy, pomegranate, date, grape seed, pycnogenol, horse chestnut, German chamomile, curcumin, comfrey, allantoin, and aloe. All are documented to treat dermatologic conditions. However, only green and black tea, soy, pomegranate, and date have published clinical trials for the treatment of skin aging. 

There is even a larger number of synthetic compounds that have been shown to have anti-aging properties. Many compounds have antioxidant functions or alter the collagen metabolism. There are, however, also new compounds that have a completely different mode of action to reduce aging or wrinkle formation. The table below gives a brief
overview of the most widely used agents. T. 

Bombeli, MD BBA 
Trueb RM. Aging of skin & hair. Ther Umsch. 2005; 62: 
837 Glaser DA. Anti-aging products and cosmeceuticals. 
Facial Plast Surg Clin North Am. 2004; 12: 363-72