(photo credit: INGIMAGE / ASAP)
A Bar-Ilan University research team has developed a unique technology that allows small molecules of anti-aging hyaluronic acid polymers to be applied as a cream instead of needing to be injected.
The team – headed by Prof. Rachel Lubart and Prof. Aharon Gedanken from the BIU Chemistry and Physics Departments and Institute for Nanotechnology and Advanced Materials – have been involved for the past few years in developing a technology for the micronization and characterization of hyaluronic acid.
Micronization is the term for shrinking the size of particles in a solid material; characterization refers to the study of a material’s structure and properties. Both areas of study have allowed the development of products – particularly drugs – that can be delivered through the skin of a patient without the need for pills, potions or injections.
The skin, which plays an important role in protecting our organs, is impenetrable. Finding means to penetrate that barrier has challenged the medical field for years. Huge efforts have been made in introducing hyaluronic acid into the skin, since it cannot penetrate in its natural state.
Now, based on this development, para-medical cosmetics pioneer Hava Zingboim has produced the first-ever formula to allow hyaluronic acid to penetrate into the deeper skin layers by application of a cream – without injection.
A key property of hyaluronic acid, which is naturally present in the human body, is its ability to adsorb large quantities of water. It is also an effective antioxidant, which means it can trap free radicals formed in the skin during inflammatory processes or as a result of exposure to UV rays. Free radicals are highly charged, short-lived molecules that in some cases are damaging to the body. These properties make hyaluronic acid an important anti-aging agent.
The look of young skin can be measured by the amount of hyaluronic acid between the cells. Unfortunately, as people age, the body gradually loses its ability to produce the substance. The decreasing availability of hyaluronic acid directly results in sagging skin, wrinkles and fine lines.