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. 2017 Jul;61(1):33-39.
doi: 10.3164/jcbn.17-35. Epub 2017 Jun 20.

Protective Effects of Astaxanthin on Skin Deterioration

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Free PMC article

Protective Effects of Astaxanthin on Skin Deterioration

Kumi Tominaga et al. J Clin Biochem Nutr. .
Free PMC article

Abstract

Astaxanthin is a carotenoid with potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activity. To evaluate the anti-inflammatory effect of astaxanthin on skin deterioration, we confirmed its role in epidermal-dermal interactions in vitro. Astaxanthin treatment suppressed ultraviolet B (UVB)-induced inflammatory cytokine secretion in keratinocytes, and matrix metalloproteinase-1 secretion by fibroblasts cultured in UVB-irradiated keratinocyte medium. To verify these findings, we conducted a 16-week clinical study with 65 healthy female participants. Participants were orally administered either a 6 mg or 12 mg dose of astaxanthin or a placebo. Wrinkle parameters and skin moisture content significantly worsened in the placebo group after 16 weeks. However, significant changes did not occur in the astaxanthin groups. Interleukin-1α levels in the stratum corneum significantly increased in the placebo and low-dose groups but not in the high-dose group between weeks 0 and 16. This study was performed in Japan from August to December, when changing environmental factors, such as UV and dryness, exacerbate skin deterioration. In conclusion, our study suggests that long-term prophylactic astaxanthin supplementation may inhibit age-related skin deterioration and maintain skin conditions associated with environmentally induced damage via its anti-inflammatory effect. (UMIN Clinical Trials Registry ID: UMIN000018550).

Keywords: astaxanthin; inflammatory cytokines; interleukin-1α; skin elasticity; wrinkle formation.

Conflict of interest statement

This study was financially sponsored by Fuji Chemical Industries Co., Ltd.

Figures

Fig. 1
Fig. 1
Effect of astaxanthin on cytokine production in UVB-irradiated keratinocytes. Each value represents mean value ± SD, **p<0.01 and *p<0.05 by ANOVA/Dunnett’s test. ANOVA, analysis of variance; AX, astaxanthin; IL, interleukin; TNF, tumor necrosis factor; UV, ultraviolet.
Fig. 2
Fig. 2
Effect of conditioned media from UVB-irradiated keratinocytes treated with or without astaxanthin on MMP-1 production in cultured fibroblasts. Each value represents mean value ± SD, *p<0.01 by ANOVA/Dunnett’s test. ANOVA, analysis of variance; AX, astaxanthin; MMP, matrix metalloproteinase; UV, ultraviolet.
Fig. 3
Fig. 3
Flow diagram of the clinical trial.
Fig. 4
Fig. 4
Effect of oral astaxanthin supplementation on wrinkle parameters from replica image analysis. Each value represents mean value ± SD, *p<0.05 by ANOVA/Dunnett’s test. ANOVA, analysis of variance.
Fig. 5
Fig. 5
Effect of oral astaxanthin supplementation on skin elasticity. Each value represents mean value ± SD, **p<0.01 and *p<0.05 by ANOVA/Dunnett’s test. ANOVA, analysis of variance.
Fig. 6
Fig. 6
Effect of oral astaxanthin supplementation on IL-1α in the stratum corneum measured by ELISA. Each value represents mean value ± SD, **p<0.01 and *p<0.05 by paired t test. ELISA, enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay; IL, interleukin.
Fig. 7
Fig. 7
Stratified analysis of skin elasticity parameters of the cheek. Each value represents mean value ± SD, **p<0.01 and *p<0.05 by ANOVA/Dunnett’s test. R2, R6 and R7 represent gross elasticity, portion of the visco-elasticity, and biological elasticity, respectively. ANOVA, analysis of variance.

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