Patent Picks—Cosmetic Cornucopia: Antioxidants, Formulating Aids, Firethorn Skin Lightening and More

Chosen biweekly by Rachel Grabenhofer, editor of Cosmetics & Toiletries magazine, for their relevance to personal care, Patent Picks are taken from publicly available sources.This special edition features a varietal "cornucopia" of recently issued patents relevant to cosmetic product development.  

Method for preparing crystalline 3-0-alkyl-ascorbic acid
US Patent 7838690
Publication date: Nov. 23, 2010
Assignee: Cosmol Co. Ltd (Kyeongki-do, Korea)

The present invention relates to a method for preparing 3-O-substituted ascorbic acid derivatives represented in which 5,6-O-isopropylidene ascorbic acid is reacted with a halide in an organic solvent in the presence of the anion exchange resin absorbed with multi-iodine anions and then deprotected. This method is proven beneficial in that it provides a target compound with high purity and high yield by finishing the reaction within a short period of time at room temperature.

According to this patent, L-ascorbic acid is a bioactive material with strong antioxidative activity that has been used as a medicine for treating scurvy and applied in cosmetics owing to its wide physiological activities including inhibiting the accumulation of melanic pigments, a known cause of chloasma or freckles. In addition, owing to its effects of increasing collagen bio-synthesis and stimulating fibroblast growth, L-ascorbic acid has been used to prevent browning of food, preserve incense and maintain freshness. However, ascorbic acid is easily oxidized by heat, light and oxygen in the air to lose its activity and is insoluble in oil, so that it has been limited in use.

To improve stability of the ascorbic acid, numbers of ascorbic acid derivatives have been developed. However, with one derivative, the substitution of the third hydroxyl group of the ascorbic acid with alkyl is limited and the generation of by-products is a problem. And in another derivative, the use of a strong polar solvent results in the decrease of yield. The object of the present invention was to solve the problems of these conventional methods for preparing ascorbic acids.

Water-dispersible cellulose and process for producing the same
US Patent 7838666
Publication date: Nov. 23, 2010
Assignee: Asahi Kasei Kabushik Kaisha (Osaka, Japan)

The present invention describes a fine, fibrous, water-dispersible cellulose derived from plant cell walls. The water-dispersible cellulose can also be made into a dry composition by compounding with a water-soluble polymer or the like. This dry composition forms a gel when combined with a polysaccharide such as glucomannan or the like. The gel excels in heat-resistance and shape-retention and can be used to produce novel food products. Since the cellulose is in the form of a very fine fiber, however, it does not impart a rough mouth feel or powdery feel when blended into the food product.

Further, the cellulose is excellent for thickening, shape-retention, suspension stabilization, emulsion stabilization, heat stabilization (i.e., heat-resistant shape-retention, denaturation-prevention of proteins), and performance of imparting a body feel. These performances are useful not only in the field of food products but also in pharmaceuticals, cosmetics and industry.

PUFA polyketide synthase systems and uses thereof
US Patent 7838649
Publication date: Nov. 23, 2010
Assignee: Martek Biosciences Corporation (Columbia, MD, USA)

This invention relates to: polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFA) polyketide synthase (PKS) systems, homologues thereof, isolated nucleic acid molecules and recombinant nucleic acid molecules encoding biologically active domains of such a PUFA PKS system, genetically modified organisms comprising PUFA PKS systems, methods of making and using such systems for the production of bioactive molecules of interest, and novel methods for identifying new bacterial and non-bacterial microorganisms having such a PUFA PKS system.

Preferred plants to genetically modify according to the present invention (i.e., plant host cells) include but are not limited to higher plants, and particularly consumable plants including crop plants and especially plants used for their oils. Such plants can include, for example: canola, soybeans, rapeseed, linseed, corn, safflowers, sunflowers and tobacco. Other preferred plants include those plants that are known to produce compounds used as pharmaceutical agents, flavoring agents, nutraceutical agents, functional food ingredients or cosmetically active agents or plants that are genetically engineered to produce these compounds/agents.

Antibodies to HWHGU54 polypeptides
US patent 7838636
Publication date: Nov. 23, 2010
Assignee: Human Genome Sciences, Inc. (Rockville, MD, USA)

The present invention relates to novel human secreted proteins and isolated nucleic acids containing the coding regions of the genes encoding such proteins. Also provided are vectors, host cells, antibodies and recombinant methods for producing human secreted proteins. The invention further relates to diagnostic and therapeutic methods useful for diagnosing and treating diseases, disorders, and/or conditions related to these novel human secreted proteins.

The polypeptide or polynucleotides and/or agonist or antagonists of the present invention may also be used to modulate mammalian characteristics, such as body height, weight, hair color, eye color, skin, percentage of adipose tissue, pigmentation, size, and shape (e.g., cosmetic surgery). Similarly, polypeptides or polynucleotides and/or agonist or antagonists of the present invention may be used to modulate mammalian metabolism affecting catabolism, anabolism, processing, utilization, and storage of energy.

Fluorinated surfactants for making fluoropolymers
US Patent 7838608
Publication date: Nov. 23, 2010
Assignee: 3M Innovative Properties Company (St. Paul, MN, USA)

The invention provides a fluorinated surfactant having the general formula:
[Rf—(O)t—CHF—(CF2)n—COO—]iXi+ (I) , wherein Rf represents a partially or fully fluorinated aliphatic group optionally interrupted with one or more oxygen atoms, t is 0 or 1 and n is 0 or 1; Xi+ represents a cation having a valence i, and i is 1, 2 or 3. The surfactant can be used in emulsion polymerization of fluoromonomers to prepare fluoropolymers. Fluoropolymers, i.e. polymers having a fluorinated backbone, have been long-known and used in a variety of applications due to their several desirable properties such as heat resistance, chemical resistance, weatherability, UV-stability, etc.

Macrocyclic diterpenes for the treatment and prophylaxis of Acne vulgaris
US Patent 7838555
Publication date: Nov. 23, 2010
Assignee: Peplin Research Pty Ltd (Bowen Hills, Queensand, Australia)

The present invention relates to the treatment of Acne vulgaris in a subject by administering an ingenane. It is predicated in part on the identification of biologically useful properties of chemical agents and chemical fractions comprising these agents obtainable from a member of the Euphorbiaceae family of plants or their botanical or horticultural relatives. These biologically useful properties include their use in the prophylaxis and/or treatment of inflammatory conditions including facilitating potentiation of the immune system or of cells or other compounds of the immune system as well as the amelioration of symptons associated with inflammation.

The present invention further contemplates a method for the prophylaxis or treatment of inflammatory conditions including chronic or transitory inflammatory conditions or for ameliorating the symptoms of an inflammatory condition by the topical or systemic administration of a macrocyclic diterpene obtainable from a member of the Euphorbiaceae family or botanical or horticultural relatives thereof or a derivative, chemical analogue or chemically synthetic form of the agent. The chemical agent of the present invention may be in the form of a purified compound, mixture of compounds, a precursor form of one or more of the compounds capable of chemical transformation into a therapeutically active agent or be in the form of a chemical fraction, sub-fraction or preparation or extract of the plant.

Hair detergent compositions
US Patent 7838478
Publication date: Nov. 23, 2010
Assignee: Kao Corporation (Tokyo, Japan)

Provided in this patent is a hair detergent composition comprising: a) an anionic surfactant, b) a carboxylic acid selected from hydroxymonocarboxylic acids, dicarboxylic acids and hydroxydicarboxylic acids or a salt thereof, and c) a silicone derivative having a group containing both a hydroxyl group and a nitrogen atom as a side chain thereof bonded to a silicon atom. The hair detergent composition is said to provide rich foaming during shampooing and at the same time be capable of imparting excellent conditioning effects and luster to the hair.

Liquid cleanser formulation with suspending and foaming capabilities
US Patent 7838477
Publication date: Nov. 23, 2010
Assignee: Kimberly-Clark Worldwide, Inc. (Neenah, WI, USA)

The present disclosure generally relates to cleansing products for the skin and hair. More particularly, the present disclosure relates to liquid cleansing compositions that have a sufficient viscosity to maintain particles suspended in the cleanser but that may also be used with suitable dispensers, such as pump foam dispensers, to generate foam.

Modulators of odorant receptors
US Patent 7838288
Publication date: Nov. 23, 2010
Assignee: Duke University (Durham, NC, USA)

The disclosed invention relates to polypeptides capable of promoting odorant receptor cell surface localization and odorant receptor functional expression. The invention further provides assays for the detection of ligands specific for various odorant receptors and, additionally, methods of screening for odorant receptor accessory protein polymorphisms and mutations associated with disease states, as well as methods of screening for therapeutic agents, ligands and modulators of such proteins. Food industries, health industries, cosmetic industries, sanitary agencies and more would reportedly find use for the compositions and methods of the present invention.

Firethorn extracts and compounds for inhibiting tyrosinase activity
US Patent 7838049
Publication date: Nov. 23, 2010
Assignee: Taipei Medical University (Taipei, Taiwan)

Previous work has implicated Pyracantha koidzumii (firethorn) extract in the inhibition of tyrosinase activity, although to a minimal extent. There is yet a need for tyrosinase inhibitors capable of effectively inhibiting the activity of tyrosine, and which can be used on a long-term basis without undesirable side effects on the human skin. The disclosed invention provides a Pyracantha koidzumii extract and new compounds isolated from the extract and their derivatives for the effective inhibition of tyrosinase.

Firethorn (Pyracantha) is a genus of large thorny evergreen shrubs in the family Rosaceae, subfamily Maloideae. It is native to the area from southeast Europe to southeast Asia and closely related to Cotoneaster, but has serrated leaf margins and numerous thorns (Cotoneaster is thornless). The disclosed extract is produced by extracting Pyracantha koidzumii with ethanol to obtain an ethanol extract and extracting the ethanol extract with ethyl acetate. The invention also provides new compounds isolated from the extract and their derivatives.

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