Stratum corneum free amino acids following barrier perturbation and repair

Skin Sciences Institute, Division of Neonatology and Pulmonary Biology, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, 3333 Burnet Avenue, Cincinnati, OH 45229, U.S.A.
International journal of cosmetic science (Impact Factor: 1.38). 02/2011; 33(1):80-9. DOI: 10.1111/j.1468-2494.2010.00592.x
Source: PubMed


Modulation of the skin environment after stratum corneum (SC) perturbation has profound effects on the rate and effectiveness of barrier repair. Intermediate water exposure, e.g. moderate relative humidity, may provide the optimum water gradient for SC repair. More rapid recovery with semipermeable (SP) films in vivo was associated with increased hydration measured as moisture accumulation rate. We hypothesized that (i) damaged SC recovering under the high water exposure of full occlusion (FO) would have lower free amino acids (FAA) than sites with low hydration (no occlusion, NO) and semi-occlusion (SP, semipermeable film, intermediate hydration) and (ii) SC under semi-occlusion would have higher FAA than with low hydration. Volar forearm sites in 15 healthy adults were perturbed via cellophane tape stripping and treated with SP, FO and NO for five days. Barrier recovery rate, hydration, dryness and erythema were determined. Serial SC samples (n=15) were collected on day 5 and FAA quantified using reverse-phase HPLC and fluorescence detection. The cumulative protein removed was higher for SP than the control, NO and FO. FAA as total, individual amino acids and citrulline were consistently higher in the control than the three damaged sites. Generally, FAA was higher in NO than FO. Citrulline was higher for NO than SP and FO over the sampled SC. Levels were higher for SP than FO in certain, but not all of the FAAs. FAA was inversely correlated to barrier integrity. Skin hydration was relatively constant at the external microenvironment of the SP site, whereas the NO and FO had a reduction, i.e. a gradient, over the time. Overall, barrier recovery under conditions of a decreasing hydration gradient produced SC with higher levels of FAA than did conditions of full occlusion.

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