Partnership Studies Mitochondria to Assess Screen Light Effects on Skin


Damaged skin can be frightening, which is why Gattefossé has committed to a two-year investigation with CYTOO to determine the direct effects of light from electronic devices on skin.

A number of companies in the personal care industry have recognized the harmful effects blue light has on the skin. According to Mintel, U.S. millennials check their phones 157 times a day, in comparison with older adults, who only check their phones 30 times per day. This exposes users to high energy visible blue light, which can affect sleep and reduce skin's antioxidant levels.

Mitochondrial Observations

To lead the investigation, Gattefossé developed a technology to recreate blue light given off of by screens such as phones, computers and tablets.

Meanwhile, CYTOO uses a micropatterning technology to control human dermal fibroblast spreading while detecting mitochondrial fusion/fission dynamics using non-invasive live-cell imaging.

Mitochondria generate cellular energy that is vital to the proper biological functioning of cells. This energy is monitored by the consistent reshaping of the mitochondrial structure through a process involving fusion and fission. According to Luc Selig, CEO of CYTOO, mitochondrial fission and fusion are significant when cells undergo metabolic or environmental stresses. This finding was also addressed during the recent IFSCC conference.

The two companies found that mitochondrial functioning and dynamics are weakened due to screen exposure. Breaking up the mitochondrial network was observed, along with the loss of quality control and diminished capacity to produce adenosine triphosphate.

Partnership and Protection Insights

The collaboration of these two companies and their technologies has provided beneficial information about the biological effects of screen-emitted light on skin and the need for its protection.

“Using the CYTOO model, we have been able to demonstrate that screen-emitted light has a tremendous detrimental effect on the mitochondrial network of skin fibroblasts,” said Nicolas Bechetoille, skin biology research manager at Gattefossé. “This research highlights the need for a strategy to protect the skin from everyday artificial light.”

“We were delighted to start a long-term collaboration with Gattefossé and to adapt our platform to dermo-cosmetic applications,” said Selig. “Both companies have brought cutting-edge technologies to address a brand-new vision of biological processes implied in skin homeostasis. This collaboration with Gattefossé validates, once more, the ability of CYTOO to generate innovative and predictive solutions for our partners.”

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