Characterization of a New Reconstructed Full Thickness Skin Model, T-Skin™, and its Application for Investigations of Anti-Aging Compounds

Int J Mol Sci. 2019 May 7;20(9):2240. doi: 10.3390/ijms20092240.


Background: We have characterized a new reconstructed full-thickness skin model, T-Skin™, compared to normal human skin (NHS) and evaluated its use in testing anti-aging compounds.

Methods: The structure and layer-specific markers were compared with NHS using histological and immunohistological staining. In anti-aging experiments, T-SkinTM was exposed to retinol (10 µM) or vitamin C (200 µM) for 5 days, followed by immunohistological staining evaluation.

Results: T-Skin™ exhibits a well stratified, differentiated and self-renewing epidermis with a dermal compartment of functional fibroblasts. Epidermal (cytokeratin 10, transglutaminase 1), dermo-epidermal junction (DEJ) (laminin 5, collagen-IV, collagen VII) and dermally-located (fibrillin 1, procollagen I) biomarkers were similar to those in NHS. Treatment of T-Skin™ with retinol decreased the expression of differentiation markers, cytokeratin 10 and transglutaminase 1 and increased the proliferation marker, Ki67, in epidermis basal-layer cells. Vitamin C increased the expression of DEJ components, collagen IV and VII and dermal procollagen 1.

Conclusions: T-Skin™ exhibits structural and biomarker location characteristics similar to NHS. Responses of T-Skin™ to retinol and vitamin C treatment were consistent with those of their known anti-aging effects. T-Skin™ is a promising model to investigate responses of epidermal, DEJ and dermal regions to new skin anti-ageing compounds.

Keywords: T-Skin; anti-aging; characterization; full-thickness skin; reconstructed skin; retinol; vitamin C.

MeSH terms

  • Ascorbic Acid / pharmacology*
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules / metabolism
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Collagen / metabolism
  • Fibrillin-1 / metabolism
  • Fibroblasts / cytology
  • Fibroblasts / drug effects
  • Humans
  • Keratin-10 / metabolism
  • Keratinocytes / drug effects
  • Skin / cytology
  • Skin / drug effects*
  • Skin Aging*
  • Vitamin A / pharmacology*
  • Vitamins / pharmacology*


  • Cell Adhesion Molecules
  • Fibrillin-1
  • Vitamins
  • kalinin
  • Vitamin A
  • Keratin-10
  • Collagen
  • Ascorbic Acid