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A Review of Skin Hypopigmentation and Contemporary Strategies to Achieve an Even Skin Tone
By: Cecilia Teran, Durant Scholz, Julie Cava, Kathleen Norris, Erica Babson and Dale Hana; Active Concepts, LLC, Lincolnton, NC USA
Posted: October 8, 2012
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Plasma membrane lectins and their glycol-conjugates are also critical molecules involved in this transfer process. Minwalla et al. investigated the effects of these molecules on the viability of melanocytes and keratinocytes and on the reversibility of melanosome-transfer inhibition induced by these agents using an in vitro melanocyte-keratinocyte coculture model system. Results indicated that lectins and neoglycoproteins were capable of inducing apoptosis in a dosedependent manner to melanocytes or keratinocytes in monoculture. The dosages at which lectins did not affect cell viability produced an inhibitory effect on melanosome transfer when used alone or in co-cultures of melanocyteskeratinocytes. Co-cultures treated with lectins resumed normal melanosome transfer in three days after the removal of the inhibitor, proving the reversibility of this effect.
Since the original reports of Olivier, Schwartz and Warren in the early 1940s describing the depigmenting effects of monobenzyl ether of hydroquinone, a notable number of phenolic compounds have been evaluated as inhibitors of melanin synthesis. For this reason, herbal extracts of botanicals rich in phenols, flavonoids, coumarins and other derivatives have gained significant attention as potential hypopigmenting agents.