Skin cells, in particular keratinocytes and fibroblasts, are the cells most exposed to environmental stressors such as UV light, smog, toxins, cigarette smoke and pollution. Once these cells are damaged, skin loses firmness and vigor, becoming weaker and more vulnerable to diseases. Skin inflammation is indeed one of the most serious consequences of environmental stress. Although inflammation is the first line of defense against microorganisms and external assault, it can also lead to visible signs of aging. In fact, during the inflammatory process, free radicals are generated, blood flow increases and immune cells are attracted by chemical signals to the site of injury.
In typical cases, when the inflammatory response is no longer required, the physiological events are rapidly terminated. However, in the case of prolonged and persistent environmental stress, this termination process fails, leading to chronic inflammation characterized by the continuous production of free radicals and further causing DNA damage, wrinkles and skin aging.
DNA integrity is the most important prerequisite for the fulfillment of vital cellular functions: The loss of functionally important genes compromises the health of cells and accelerates the skin aging process. Recent studies have demonstrated that in the complex scenario of signal transduction mechanisms activated to protect cells, there are elements that play pivotal roles to guarantee DNA integrity. Among these elements is the family of GADD45 proteins, which assists cells by preventing accumulated mutations in the nuclear DNA. These proteins act as stress sensors and are able to mediate a variety of interactions among different cellular components, triggering processes of DNA repair and protection.
Other elements that maintain DNA integrity and stability are sirtuins—proteins that regulate cell longevity. Sirtuins are present in all multicellular organisms and regulate the activity of transcription factors and DNA-binding proteins, acting as nucleus stabilizing factors.
Lab Practical: Using Rubus idaeus Extract
- The obtained Rubus idaeus extract is a hydrosoluble, odorless, pale yellow powder.
- The extract is soluble in aqueous medium, glycerin and ethanol and is stable at pH 4.0-8.0.
- Once dissolved, the extract can be incorporated during cooling or at the end since it can withstand temperatures of up to 70°C.
- Due to its hydrophilic nature, the extract is not recommended for anhydrous systems.
- Dilutions of 1.0% and 0.5% are recommended.