Normalising skin surface microflora

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Ashland Care Specialties, a business unit of Ashland Specialty Ingredients, has announced the launch Skin’s Ecology, an initiative in support of new products that help normalise microflora on the surface of skin.

The skin’s natural probiotic defences are supported by antimicrobial peptides and are essential in the skin’s ongoing fight against undesirable microorganisms. Ashland will show how a biofunctional ingredient based on flax seed may be used to support cathelicidin and -defensin antimicrobial peptides, an important class of biological peptides necessary to maintain a proper ecosystem balance on skin. “Probiotics are consumed by millions of people every day to help balance the body’s inner microflora. Likewise, it may be possible to enhance the natural microbiome and biochemical shield on the surface of skin with a topical cream containing Lipigenine biofunctional,” said Justine Cotton, marketing manager, skin care biofunctionals, Ashland Care Specialties. “Inspiration for our biofunctional derived from flax seed comes from the process pertaining to skin’s own lipid production in the stratum corneum, which goes beyond a physical barrier function to include a biochemical shield against the proliferation of undesirable microorganisms.” The body has hundreds of natural antimicrobial peptides with an ability to inhibit the growth of harmful microbes. Ashland’s laboratory work in vitro and ex vivo has demonstrated that it is possible to enhance the expression of beneficial cathelicidin LL-37 and -defensin antimicrobial peptides in keratinocytes 24 hours after topical application of 1 per cent (active) Lipigenine biofunctional. “The results surpassed our own expectations,” said Cotton.”In vitro and ex vivo test results suggest an improvement in the expression of antimicrobial peptides that ranged from approximately 50 per cent to nearly 150 per cent. Follow-up efficacy testing showed significant growth inhibition of an undesirable microbe after contact with cultured medium from keratinocytes. Based on these results, we envision a new category of skin care products that may assist the skin in its natural efforts to normalise microflora on the surface of skin and balance its ecosytem to help protect against external stresses.”