Skin Biology Gives Researchers Clues for Developing New TreatmentsThe interest in glucosamine as a possible treatment comes in part from what scientists already know happens on a cellular level when skin is exposed to UV radiation. Chronic UV exposure can damage melanocytes, cells in the skin responsible for producing melanin, in a variety of different ways. Often, this damage can lead to a loss of cellular control, and the production of chemicals that allow the cells to keep producing more and more melanin ?which eventually leads to age spots and uneven discoloration. Additionally, as skin ages, cell turnover slows down and melanin "dust" ?microscopic particles of melanin ?can become trapped in the upper layers of skin, resulting in a duller appearance.
Researchers are familiar with these processes and that has helped them focus on substances - such as n-acetyl glucosamine - that are known to interrupt the UV-triggered chemical signals that turn on melanin production. Skin care products that utilize signal-blocking ingredients currently exist in the marketplace, but products with n-acetyl glucosamine/niacinamide - which block melanin at two different points in the pigment producing process - are among the newest and most studied.
"Pigmentation is an appearance issue that strikes an emotional chord for women, and even though we're constantly telling our patients about the importance of UV-protection, once the damage is done, we need to be able to provide them with ways to help," says Dr. Kimball. "The level of research and validation on topical cosmetic application
Source:Manning Selvage & Lee