Supplementating with dietary astaxanthin combined with collagen hydrolysate improves facial elasticity and decreases matrix metalloproteinase-1 and -12 expression: a comparative study with placebo

J Med Food. 2014 Jul;17(7):810-6. doi: 10.1089/jmf.2013.3060. Epub 2014 Jun 23.


Photoaging accounts for most age-related changes in skin appearance. It has been suggested that both astaxanthin, a potent antioxidant, and collagen hydrolysate can be used as antiaging modalities in photoaged skin. However, there is no clinical study using astaxanthin combined with collagen hydrolysate. We investigated the effects of using a combination of dietary astaxanthin and collagen hydrolysate supplementation on moderately photoaged skin in humans. A total of 44 healthy subjects were recruited and treated with astaxanthin (2 mg/day) combined with collagen hydrolysate (3 g/day) or placebos, which were identical in appearance and taste to the active supplementation for 12 weeks. The elasticity and hydration properties of facial skin were evaluated using noninvasive objective devices. In addition, we also evaluated the expression of procollagen type I, fibrillin-1, matrix metalloproteinase-1 (MMP-1) and -12, and ultraviolet (UV)-induced DNA damage in artificially UV-irradiated buttock skin before and after treatment. The supplement group showed significant improvements in skin elasticity and transepidermal water loss in photoaged facial skin after 12 weeks compared with the placebo group. In the supplement group, expression of procollagen type I mRNA increased and expression of MMP-1 and -12 mRNA decreased compared with those in the placebo group. In contrast, there was no significant difference in UV-induced DNA damage between groups. These results demonstrate that dietary astaxanthin combined with collagen hydrolysate can improve elasticity and barrier integrity in photoaged human facial skin, and such treatment is well tolerated.

Keywords: anti-aging; astaxanthin; collagen hydrolysate; photoaging.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antioxidants / administration & dosage
  • Asian People
  • Collagen / administration & dosage*
  • Collagen Type I / genetics
  • Collagen Type I / metabolism
  • DNA Damage / drug effects
  • DNA Damage / radiation effects
  • Dietary Supplements*
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Elasticity
  • Female
  • Fibrillin-1
  • Fibrillins
  • Humans
  • Matrix Metalloproteinase 1 / genetics
  • Matrix Metalloproteinase 1 / metabolism
  • Matrix Metalloproteinase 12 / genetics
  • Matrix Metalloproteinase 12 / metabolism
  • Microfilament Proteins / genetics
  • Microfilament Proteins / metabolism
  • Middle Aged
  • Patient Compliance
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Skin / drug effects*
  • Skin / metabolism
  • Skin Aging / drug effects*
  • Ultraviolet Rays / adverse effects
  • Xanthophylls / administration & dosage


  • Antioxidants
  • Collagen Type I
  • FBN1 protein, human
  • Fibrillin-1
  • Fibrillins
  • Microfilament Proteins
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Xanthophylls
  • astaxanthine
  • Collagen
  • MMP12 protein, human
  • Matrix Metalloproteinase 12
  • MMP1 protein, human
  • Matrix Metalloproteinase 1