Flax Seed for Skin Lipid Restoration

November 15, 2010 | Contact Author | By: Katie Schaefer
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International Specialty Products (ISP) has sourced flax seed to design an ingredient that boosts skin lipid synthesis in the stratum corneum (SC) for optimized lipidic homeostasis and improved skin protection. Lipigenine (Proposed INCI: Water (aqua) (and) Glycerin (and) Linum Usitatissimum (Linseed or Flax) Seed Extract) is said to boost the intercellular lipids in the SC such as ceramides, cholesterol and fatty acids to optimize lipidic homeostasis.

According to the company, the SC is composed of corneocytes and intercellular lipids, which contain ceramides (50%), cholesterol (25%), fatty acids (15%) and cholesterol sulfate (2-5%). In the granular layer, smooth endoplasmic reticulum and the Golgi apparatus of keratinocytes contribute to initial lipid synthesis. The storage, transport and secretion of these lipids into the SC are supported by lamellar bodies, which are derived from the Golgi apparatus.

The skin regularly produces these bodies and lipids to maintain skin barrier integrity but this ability diminishes with age, resulting in an imbalance in homeostasis and dry skin. The ingredient was developed to target HMG-CoA reductase, a key enzyme of skin cholesterol synthesis, to reportedly help target cholesterol synthesis. An ex vivo study found it to boost HMG-CoA reductase enzyme expression, while in vivo testing and expert evaluation showed the active boosted lipid synthesis and helped restore lipid content in the SC.

In addition to restoring the skin's lipids, the flax seed extract is said to restore radiance, hydration, tone and elasticity to the skin. It is recommended for skin care products for dry and sensitive skin and for products that counteract the daily use of detergents and soaps.