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Fasting and Its Impact on Skin Anatomy, Physiology, and Physiopathology: A Comprehensive Review of the Literature

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Skin serves as the first protective line and barrier of the body. Like many other organs, skin can be affected by several disorders in response to external factors such as pathogens, ultraviolet light, and pollution, as well as endogenous alterations related to aging and/or oxidative stress disturbance. Researchers have reported new insights into how skin cells are altered in response to caloric restriction diets in mammals. One of the most well-known caloric restriction diets is the Ramadan intermittent fasting, which is a radical change in the diet plan of practitioners for the period of one lunar month. Ramadan fasting represents the fourth of the five pillars of the Islamic creed. Even though infirm individuals are waived to take part in this religious duty, patients with various health problems, including those with different skin disorders, might choose to share this event with peers and family members. No standardized protocols or guidelines exist, however, to advise their physicians on the proper management of their patients’ condition during fasting. With an increasing Muslim population living in Western countries, this topic has started to draw substantial attention, not only of Middle-Eastern physicians, but also of clinicians in the West. For this purpose, we carried out a comprehensive overview on the topic. Our main findings are that: (1) there is a strong need for evidence-based suggestions and guidance. Literature on the impact of the Ramadan fasting, as well as of other kinds of fasting, on skin diseases is scarce and of poor quality, as well as the information available from the Internet; (2) patients willing to fast should be advised about the importance of taking proper treatments or consider alternative options including administration of trans-dermal/topical drugs, as they are permitted during daylight hours. Further, non-compliance has important, clinical and economic implications for an effective patient management.
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nutrients
Review
Fasting and Its Impact on Skin Anatomy, Physiology,
and Physiopathology: A Comprehensive Review of
the Literature
Nicola Luigi Bragazzi 1, *,† , Maha Sellami 2 ,† , Iman Salem 3, Rosalynn Conic 3, Mark Kimak 3,
Paolo Daniele Maria Pigatto 4and Giovanni Damiani 3,4,5,*
1Postgraduate School of Public Health, Department of Health Sciences (DISSAL), Via Antonio Pastore 1,
University of Genoa, 16132 Genoa, Italy
2Sport Science Program, College of Arts and Sciences (QU-CAS), University of Qatar, Doha 2713, Qatar;
maha.sellami@gmail.com
3Department of Dermatology, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH 44106, USA;
ims31@case.edu (I.S.); ruzica.conic@gmail.com (R.C.); mar.kimak@gmail.com (M.K.)
4
Clinical Dermatology, IRCCS Istituto Ortopedico Galeazzi, Milan, Italy; Department of Biomedical, Surgical
and Dental Sciences, University of Milan, 20161 Milan, Italy; paolopigatto@valeo.it
5Young Dermatologists Italian Network (YDIN), Centro Studi GISED, 24121 Bergamo, Italy
*Correspondence: robertobragazzi@gmail.com (N.L.B.); dr.giovanni.damiani@gmail.com (G.D.);
Tel.: +39-010-353-8508 (N.L.B.); +39-026-621-444 (G.D.)
Contributed equally as first authors.
Received: 7 December 2018; Accepted: 18 January 2019; Published: 23 January 2019


Abstract:
Skin serves as the first protective line and barrier of the body. Like many other organs, skin
can be affected by several disorders in response to external factors such as pathogens, ultraviolet
light, and pollution, as well as endogenous alterations related to aging and/or oxidative stress
disturbance. Researchers have reported new insights into how skin cells are altered in response
to caloric restriction diets in mammals. One of the most well-known caloric restriction diets is the
Ramadan intermittent fasting, which is a radical change in the diet plan of practitioners for the period
of one lunar month. Ramadan fasting represents the fourth of the five pillars of the Islamic creed.
Even though infirm individuals are waived to take part in this religious duty, patients with various
health problems, including those with different skin disorders, might choose to share this event with
peers and family members. No standardized protocols or guidelines exist, however, to advise their
physicians on the proper management of their patients’ condition during fasting. With an increasing
Muslim population living in Western countries, this topic has started to draw substantial attention,
not only of Middle-Eastern physicians, but also of clinicians in the West. For this purpose, we carried
out a comprehensive overview on the topic. Our main findings are that: (1) there is a strong need
for evidence-based suggestions and guidance. Literature on the impact of the Ramadan fasting,
as well as of other kinds of fasting, on skin diseases is scarce and of poor quality, as well as the
information available from the Internet; (2) patients willing to fast should be advised about the
importance of taking proper treatments or consider alternative options including administration of
trans-dermal/topical drugs, as they are permitted during daylight hours. Further, non-compliance
has important, clinical and economic implications for an effective patient management.
Keywords:
compliance and adherence to treatment; Ramadan or intermittent fasting; caloric
restriction; skin disorders; chronotherapy and chronomedicine
Nutrients 2019,11, 249; doi:10.3390/nu11020249 www.mdpi.com/journal/nutrients
Nutrients 2019,11, 249 2 of 15
1. The Effects of Dieting on Health
Skin disorders are commonly widespread skin conditions affecting both children and adults and
may induce severe disability [
1
3
]. All skin conditions combined represent the fourth leading cause
of non-fatal disability worldwide, especially in resource-poor regions [
4
]. In 2013, skin disorders
were estimated to account for 1.79% of the total global burden of disease (GBD) calculated in
disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) among 306 diseases and injuries [
1
,
2
]. These estimations
are likely to differ among countries depending on the different healthcare systems and lifestyles
adopted [
5
]. It is generally assumed that skin problems result from the interplay between various
factors, including the biological make-up of the individual (genetic components, internal diseases,
immunological susceptibility) and environmental factors (infections, stress, lifestyles, diet or exposure
to ultraviolet (UV) light) [6] (Figure 1).
Nutrients 2019, 11, x FOR PEER REVIEW 2 of 16
Skin disorders are commonly widespread skin conditions affecting both children and adults
and may induce severe disability [2–4]. All skin conditions combined represent the fourth leading
cause of non-fatal disability worldwide, especially in resource-poor regions [5]. In 2013, skin
disorders were estimated to account for 1.79% of the total global burden of disease (GBD) calculated
in disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) among 306 diseases and injuries [2,3]. These estimations are
likely to differ among countries depending on the different healthcare systems and lifestyles
adopted [6]. It is generally assumed that skin problems result from the interplay between various
factors, including the biological make-up of the individual (genetic components, internal diseases,
immunological susceptibility) and environmental factors (infections, stress, lifestyles, diet or
exposure to ultraviolet (UV) light) [7] (Figure 1).
Figure 1. Factors affecting the skin. Abbreviations: UV (ultraviolet).
In recent decades, a huge body of research has investigated the impact of dieting on skin
anatomy, physiology and physiopathology. As stated by Katta and Desai [8], the role of dietary
manipulation as a potential non-pharmacological option for the treatment and management of skin
diseases has been overlooked for a long time. Dieting can, instead, have various effects affecting
health outcomes (as in the case of psoriasis) [9], modifying the prognosis (for example, in patients
with acne) [10] or preventing or partially mitigating/counteracting the insurgence and the severity of
the disorder (such as skin cancer and skin aging) [11].
Different dieting strategies/patterns and fasting protocols exist, based on (i) the degree of
restriction of calorie intake (low-calorie, or very low-calorie dieting, when the daily food energy
consumption is less than 800 kilocalories/day), (ii) the amount of hours of fasting (time-restricted
feeding, intermittent or circadian fasting, alternate-day versus daily fasting), and (iii) the food or
foods excluded (including low-fat, low-carbohydrate dieting, vegetarian or semi-vegetarian dieting)
[12,13].
Emergent evidences seem to suggest that calorie restriction can protect against various diseases,
including cancer, diabetes and heart disease. A calorie-restricted diet has been demonstrated to exert
several beneficial effects, such as increasing lifespan, counteracting aging, modulating immune cell
Figure 1. Factors affecting the skin. Abbreviations: UV (ultraviolet).
In recent decades, a huge body of research has investigated the impact of dieting on skin anatomy,
physiology and physiopathology. As stated by Katta and Desai [
7
], the role of dietary manipulation as
a potential non-pharmacological option for the treatment and management of skin diseases has been
overlooked for a long time. Dieting can, instead, have various effects affecting health outcomes (as in
the case of psoriasis) [
8
], modifying the prognosis (for example, in patients with acne) [
9
] or preventing
or partially mitigating/counteracting the insurgence and the severity of the disorder (such as skin
cancer and skin aging) [10].
Different dieting strategies/patterns and fasting protocols exist, based on (i) the degree of
restriction of calorie intake (low-calorie, or very low-calorie dieting, when the daily food energy
consumption is less than 800 kilocalories/day), (ii) the amount of hours of fasting (time-restricted
feeding, intermittent or circadian fasting, alternate-day versus daily fasting), and (iii) the food or foods
excluded (including low-fat, low-carbohydrate dieting, vegetarian or semi-vegetarian dieting) [
11
,
12
].
Emergent evidences seem to suggest that calorie restriction can protect against various diseases,
including cancer, diabetes and heart disease. A calorie-restricted diet has been demonstrated to exert
Nutrients 2019,11, 249 3 of 15
several beneficial effects, such as increasing lifespan, counteracting aging, modulating immune cell
profile activity and reducing insulin resistance as well as preventing some stages of the carcinogenesis
process [13].
Caloric restricted diets can also result in increasing the number of stem cells, which is a factor that
plays a major role in tissue homeostasis and growth [14].
Dieting can also depend on personal dietary choices or on religious beliefs, such as the Adventist
diet or the Ramadan fasting. While high-quality, large-scale epidemiological surveys, such as
the “Adventist health study 1” (AHS-1) and the “Adventist health study 2” (AHS-2) [
15
], have
investigated the impact of the Adventist diet on several health outcomes, the Ramadan fasting has
been relatively understudied.
The month of Ramadan is the ninth month of the Muslim lunar calendar (al-Hijra), which has
great significance and value among Muslims, as it represents the month of the descent of the Noble
Book (al-Qu’ran). The Ramadan fasting (as-sawm) is the fourth pillar of the Islamic faith (arkan al-Islam),
together with the faith declaration or profession (ash-shahada) being the first pillar, the five daily ritual
prayers (as-salah) as the second pillar, charity (az-zakat) (third pillar), and, finally, the pilgrimage to
Mecca (al-hajj) for those who can afford it. The Ramadan fasting is not limited to abstinence from food
and drinking, but also from smoking, systemic medication and sexual intercourse [16].
The Ramadan fasting is not, however, a continuous or prolonged fasting, but, rather, includes
alternate fasting and feasting (re-feeding) periods [
17
], with a pre-dawn meal referred to as suhoor, and
an after-sunset meal, called iftar. Since the Islamic calendar is a lunar one which is typically 11 days
less than the Gregorian or solar calendar (354 and 365 days respectively), the duration of the Ramadan
fasting can vary from 29 to 30 days, and the timing is 11 days earlier each year, therefore it can coincide
with any season, which means that the fasting hours can sometimes exceed 18 hours, especially at
higher latitudes [17,18].
Some Muslims such as pre-pubertal and pubertal children, menstruating women, pregnant and
breast-feeding women, the elderly, sick people, and long distance travelers are waived from this
religious duty [
19
]. However, they could choose to fast in order to share the spirituality of this month
with their friends, peers and family members [20].
Some clinical implications of Ramadan fasting are well noted. Given the stress of fluid deprivation
and subsequent electrolyte changes, kidney physiology is often significantly impacted. This is
especially true among those with chronic kidney disease (CKD), predisposing them to acute tubular
injury. Additionally, dehydration is a major precipitating factor for renal stone development [2123].
Data on the effects of Ramadan fasting on skin disorders, however, is less well known and
no standardized guidelines exist for advising optimal management methods and options. For this
purpose, we have carried out this review to demonstrate possible clinical implications of the Ramadan
fasting in terms of skin anatomy, physiology and physiopathology, warranting further investigation.
2. Anatomy and Physiology of the Skin
Skin is the largest organ of the body, covering an impressive surface area of approximately 2 m
2
and accounting for about 20% of total adult body weight. Being situated at the interface between the
human body and environment, it is an important barrier, with both passive and active roles against
chemical, physical and microbial insults [24].
Skin is composed of an upper layer (the epidermis), and a lower layer (the dermis) separated
by a basement membrane. The epidermis is formed of 5 layers: the outermost layer is the stratum
corneum, the stratum lucidum (present only in some specific parts of the human body, such as the
fingertips, palms, and soles of the feet), the stratum granulosum, the stratum spinosum, and the stratum
basale (the inner most layer that contains epidermal stem cells) [24].
The stratum corneum is particularly thick, consisting of dead cells (corneocytes) surrounded by
lipid drafts representing the “formidable” physical barrier [24].
Nutrients 2019,11, 249 4 of 15
Dermis is divided according to the thickness of its collagen content into an upper stratum papillare
and lower stratum reticulare, containing thin and thick collagen fibers, respectively [25].
Hypodermis or subcutaneous tissue is a layer of loose connective tissue and elastin that provides
insulation from cold temperature, shock adsorbent capability, and a nutrient and energy storage
reservoir [
26
]. The hypodermis is thickest in the buttocks, palms of the hands, and soles of the feet [
27
].
As we age, the hypodermis begins to atrophy, contributing to the thin wrinkled appearance of the
aged skin [27].
Furthermore, skin harbors some innate and adaptive immune cells composing the skin immune
system such as natural killers (NKs), mast cells, macrophages, highly specialized antigen presenting
cells (APCs), epidermal dendritic cells (EDCs, also referred to as Langerhans cells), dermal dendritic
cells (DCs, also known as interstitial or migratory DCs),
αβ
T cells,
γδ
T cells, and B cells [
28
,
29
],
among others.
As such, the unique position and structure of the skin qualify it to perform different and
peculiar functions including acting as a physical barrier, immune response, sensation (perception of
pain, temperature, touch, and pressure), endocrine (vitamin D synthesis), neuro-endocrine (tightly
networked to central stress axes), and homeostatic (expelling uric acid, ammonia, urea, and excess
water) [29].
The skin has a natural self-healing ability [
30
]. When an aggression breaks or compromises the
continuity of the cutaneous barrier, a healing process takes place in order to restore its integrity and
preserve its function in about a week in the case of mild wounds.
Scarring is a natural phenomenon but many factors can affect speed and quality, such as age and
general condition of the individual, the cause of the injury, its depth or its location [30].
3. Epidemiology of Skin-Related Disorders in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Region
Skin diseases are considered among the most common clinical problems diagnosed in primary
care settings in tropical areas and settings belonging to the Middle East and North Africa (MENA)
region [
31
]. It should be noted that in these areas special fasting regimens, such as the Ramadan fasting,
are adopted.
While several studies have investigated the prevalence and the economic burden of dermatoses
among Arabs and Muslims living in the Middle East [
32
], little is known about the epidemiology of
dermatological conditions among Arab Americans.
In an interesting survey performed by Essawi et al. [
33
] in Michigan, the five most commonly
self-reported skin conditions were eczema, acne, superficial fungal infections, melasma, and warts.
The most concerning skin problem, however, was skin discoloration, uneven tone, and hirsutism.
There were significant associations between socioeconomic status, time spent in the USA, and seeking
medical advice.
4. Effects of Fasting on Skin Homeostasis
Different models of fasting have been studied in both animals and humans in an attempt to
understand the effect of fasting on skin structure and function, including modified alternate-day
fasting regimens [
34
], periodic diet mimicking fasting [
35
], short-term fasting [
36
], feed restriction [
37
],
caloric or calorie or energy restriction or energy balance [
38
], or prolonged fasting [
39
], among others.
4.1. Fasting and Skin Structural and Functional Adaptation
It is plausible to assume that the skin, as the fundamental protective barrier against water and heat
loss, microbial insults and mechanical injuries, plays a crucial role in the adaptation to limited caloric
intake. In 2017, Forni et al. studied the skin’s adaptive structural and functional effects of mice exposed
to long-term caloric restriction for 6 months. Authors reported statistically significant differences in
the metabolic profile between the epidermis and dermis, with a more prominent oxidative metabolic
profile in the dermis compared to the epidermis. This profile was associated with a marked increase in
Nutrients 2019,11, 249 5 of 15
epidermal quiescent stem cells. In addition, there was an increase in inter-follicular stem cells which
were believed to be responsible for maintaining fur and increasing the growth rates and retention of
hair. Furthermore, there was an underdevelopment of the dermal adipocyte reservoir, an expansion of
dermal vasculature, and an increase of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). All the previous
changes enabled the skin to maintain thermal homeostasis under conditions of restricted energy
intake [40].
As previously mentioned, one of the main functions of the stratum corneum is to provide a
permeability barrier to protect against excess water loss. Extracellular lipids formed primarily of
ceramids, cholesterol, and fatty acids are the fundamental components of this barrier. The synthesis of
cholesterol necessary for barrier formation takes place in the epidermis [41,42].
Wu-Pong and colleagues studied the effect of changes in plasma cholesterol levels on the synthesis
of epidermal and dermal cholesterol and, subsequently, restoration of barrier function in hairless mice.
Results have revealed a significant decrease in the cholesterologenesis in both layers with fasting
resulting in a compromised barrier function which was not corrected by topical lipid application [
41
].
In a study evaluating the impact of caloric restriction on the side effects associated with topical
retinoid treatment, there was a significant reduction in retinoid-induced skin irritation without
interfering with the beneficial effects of the medication. The resultant mitigation of adverse events
associated with fasting was attributed to two factors: the positive effect of caloric restriction on local
antioxidant levels, and its inhibitory effect on the transcription of matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)
genes involved in tissue destruction [42].
4.2. Fasting and Wound Healing
In an experimental mouse model, short-term fasting for 4 consecutive days repeated every 2
weeks for 2 months, followed by the induction of a cutaneous wound, was associated with an increase
in wound healing compared to the control group. According to the authors, caloric restriction enhanced
wound healing through the increase in macrophage activity. The production of transforming growth
factor alpha (TGF-
α
) by macrophage during the re-epithelization phase of wound healing promotes
keratinocyte proliferation. Additionally, macrophages also secrete VEGF, a potent angiogenic and
fibrogenic factor necessary for granulation tissue formation [43].
Another study conducted by Hunt et al. in 2012, however, reported slower wound healing in
a sample of 22 7-month-old Fischer-344 rats, 8 of which were maintained on a caloric restricted diet
after wounding, compared to 5 controls which were fed ad libitum. This effect was corrected to a
healing rate comparable with that of the control group when the caloric restricted rats were re-fed ad
libitum for 2 days before wounding, in addition to maintaining a normal diet after wounding. This
was explained by up-regulated expression of insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) binding protein 3
(IGFBP-3) and increased synthesis of type I collagen, resulting in enhancing the contractile capacity of
the wound [
44
]. In other studies, a one-time fast for 72 hours with access to water only resulted in a
decrease in cutaneous collagen formation.
In 2000, Miltyk and Palka postulated a fasting-associated decrease in pyrroline-5-carboxylate
(P5C), a proline precursor molecule, to be responsible for the suppression of the IGF-1-dependent
stimulation of collagen synthesis [45].
Another study conducted by Cechowska-Pasko et al. in 2003 attributed this effect instead to the
decreased availability of IGF-1 for binding to its receptors, as a result of fasting-induced up-regulation
in the levels of the phosphoisoform of IGF-I binding protein type 1 (IGFBP-1), known for its high
binding affinity to IGF-1 [
46
]. In 2004, another hypothesis was adopted by the same research group.
They proposed the decline in prolidase activity, an enzyme responsible for proline salvage from
imidodipeptides for re-use in collagen synthesis, as an explanation for the negative effects of fasting
on collagen biosynthesis. They reported that inhibition of prolidase activity could be attributed to a
fasting-associated reduction in pyruvate kinase (PK) enzyme activity resulting in the accumulation of
a strong prolidase inhibitor factor (PIF), namely the phosphoenolpyruvate (PEP) [47].
Nutrients 2019,11, 249 6 of 15
Figure 2pictorially shows the hypothesized mechanism of fasting effect on wound healing.
Nutrients 2019, 11, x FOR PEER REVIEW 6 of 16
Figure 2 pictorially shows the hypothesized mechanism of fasting effect on wound healing.
Figure 2. The hypothesized mechanisms of the biphasic effect of intermittent fasting on wound
healing. Abbreviations: IGFBP-1 (insulin-like growth factor binding protein 1); IGFBP-3 (insulin-like
growth factor binding protein 3); P5C (pyrroline-5-carboxylate); PEP (phosphoenolpyruvate); PIF
(prolidase inhibitor factor); PK (pyruvate kinase); TNF-α (tumor necrosis factor alpha); VEGF
(vascular endothelial growth factor).
4.3. Fasting and the Immune System
Some studies investigated the effects of prolonged fasting for a minimum of 3 days followed by
re-feeding and have shown a favorable outcome on the immune system. The decreased level of
circulating IGF-1 and protein kinase A (PKA) signaling induced by prolonged fasting resulted in
modulation of long-term hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) promoting self-renewal, lineage
regeneration and proliferation, especially of NKs, and stress resistance, an effect believed to be
protective against the toxic effect of chemotherapy on HSCs in humans. Additionally, it was proven
that short-term starvation can enhance the phagocytic activity of macrophages promoting the
process of wound healing and providing protection against some granulomatous infections [49].
4.4. Fasting and Skin Growth Regulation
IGF-1 as a mitogen is known for its pro-growth effects which include suppression of apoptosis,
increased angiogenesis, and stimulation of cell proliferation. IGFs are produced in most cells, with
IGFBPs that modulate their actions, and act locally on a paracrine or autocrine mode. IGF stimulates
proliferation (especially IGF-1) and cell differentiation. Because of their homology structure with
insulin, IGFs can, under determined pharmacological doses, act on the insulin receptor. In
particular, IGF-1 can lower blood sugar, inhibit the processes of lipolysis and of catabolism of
proteins. The mitogenesis downstream signaling cascade of IGF-1 involves the activation of
mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) pathways
[50–52]. In 2007, Xie et al. studied the effect of 20% dietary caloric restriction for 5 days a week
extended through 10 weeks with and without exercise on the development of skin tumors in
“SENsitivity to CARcinogenesis” (SENCAR) mice, known for their sensitivity to
12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate (TPA)-induced skin cancer. The research group recorded a
decrease of Ras-MAPK and PI3K-Akt pathways, in addition to down-regulation of the expression of
31 and 34 genes related to MAPK and PI3K pathways, respectively. This was explained by a
significant reduction of IGF-1 levels associated with dietary restriction, suggesting a potential
anti-carcinogenic role [53].
Figure 2.
The hypothesized mechanisms of the biphasic effect of intermittent fasting on wound
healing. Abbreviations: IGFBP-1 (insulin-like growth factor binding protein 1); IGFBP-3 (insulin-like
growth factor binding protein 3); P5C (pyrroline-5-carboxylate); PEP (phosphoenolpyruvate); PIF
(prolidase inhibitor factor); PK (pyruvate kinase); TNF-
α
(tumor necrosis factor alpha); VEGF (vascular
endothelial growth factor).
4.3. Fasting and the Immune System
Some studies investigated the effects of prolonged fasting for a minimum of 3 days followed
by re-feeding and have shown a favorable outcome on the immune system. The decreased level
of circulating IGF-1 and protein kinase A (PKA) signaling induced by prolonged fasting resulted in
modulation of long-term hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) promoting self-renewal, lineage regeneration
and proliferation, especially of NKs, and stress resistance, an effect believed to be protective against
the toxic effect of chemotherapy on HSCs in humans. Additionally, it was proven that short-term
starvation can enhance the phagocytic activity of macrophages promoting the process of wound
healing and providing protection against some granulomatous infections [48].
4.4. Fasting and Skin Growth Regulation
IGF-1 as a mitogen is known for its pro-growth effects which include suppression of apoptosis,
increased angiogenesis, and stimulation of cell proliferation. IGFs are produced in most cells, with
IGFBPs that modulate their actions, and act locally on a paracrine or autocrine mode. IGF stimulates
proliferation (especially IGF-1) and cell differentiation. Because of their homology structure with
insulin, IGFs can, under determined pharmacological doses, act on the insulin receptor. In particular,
IGF-1 can lower blood sugar, inhibit the processes of lipolysis and of catabolism of proteins. The
mitogenesis downstream signaling cascade of IGF-1 involves the activation of mitogen-activated
protein kinase (MAPK) and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) pathways [
49
51
]. In 2007, Xie et
al. studied the effect of 20% dietary caloric restriction for 5 days a week extended through 10 weeks
with and without exercise on the development of skin tumors in “SENsitivity to CARcinogenesis”
(SENCAR) mice, known for their sensitivity to 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate (TPA)-induced
skin cancer. The research group recorded a decrease of Ras-MAPK and PI3K-Akt pathways, in
addition to down-regulation of the expression of 31 and 34 genes related to MAPK and PI3K pathways,
respectively. This was explained by a significant reduction of IGF-1 levels associated with dietary
restriction, suggesting a potential anti-carcinogenic role [52].
Nutrients 2019,11, 249 7 of 15
4.5. Fasting and Skin Aging
Skin aging is a complex, multi-factorial process characterized by decreased collagen level (in
particular, collagen type 1, which lowers the ratio of collagen type 3/collagen type 1, and collagen
type 7), loss of fibrillin-positive biostructures and broken elastin.
As previously stated, caloric restriction without deficiency of essential nutrients has been linked
to enhancement of lifespan and decreased aging [
53
]. The non-enzymatic glycation and oxidation
processes can affect various body proteins including, but not limited to, plasma proteins, hemoglobin,
and skin collagen. The accumulation of glycoxidation products such as carboxymethyl lysine (CML)
and pentosidine in cutaneous collagen promotes skin aging. A classic study conducted by Cefalu et
al. in 1995 evaluated the effect of a long-term 60% caloric restriction program on the levels of CML
and pentosidine in rodent skin. Authors found that chronic caloric restriction decreased the glycation
rate of skin proteins, resulting in the reduction of age-related accumulation of these metabolites in
cutaneous collagen [
54
]. On the other hand, the effect of telomere attrition on restricting cell replication
capacity and subsequently its substantial role in aging is well established, even though its role in
fasting remains controversial. Although telomere length (TL) is inversely related to body mass index
(BMI), telomere dynamics did not seem to be affected by caloric restriction [55].
Figure 3pictorially shows the hypothesized mechanism of fasting on skin aging.
Nutrients 2019, 11, x FOR PEER REVIEW 7 of 16
4.5. Fasting and Skin Aging
Skin aging is a complex, multi-factorial process characterized by decreased collagen level (in
particular, collagen type 1, which lowers the ratio of collagen type 3/collagen type 1, and collagen
type 7), loss of fibrillin-positive biostructures and broken elastin.
As previously stated, caloric restriction without deficiency of essential nutrients has been linked
to enhancement of lifespan and decreased aging [54]. The non-enzymatic glycation and oxidation
processes can affect various body proteins including, but not limited to, plasma proteins,
hemoglobin, and skin collagen. The accumulation of glycoxidation products such as carboxymethyl
lysine (CML) and pentosidine in cutaneous collagen promotes skin aging. A classic study conducted
by Cefalu et al. in 1995 evaluated the effect of a long-term 60% caloric restriction program on the
levels of CML and pentosidine in rodent skin. Authors found that chronic caloric restriction
decreased the glycation rate of skin proteins, resulting in the reduction of age-related accumulation
of these metabolites in cutaneous collagen [55]. On the other hand, the effect of telomere attrition on
restricting cell replication capacity and subsequently its substantial role in aging is well established,
even though its role in fasting remains controversial. Although telomere length (TL) is inversely
related to body mass index (BMI), telomere dynamics did not seem to be affected by caloric
restriction [56].
Figure 3 pictorially shows the hypothesized mechanism of fasting on skin aging.
Figure 3. The anti-aging effect of fasting. Abbreviations: CML (carboxymethyl lysine).
4.6. Fasting and Skin Effects: A Summary
Taking together all the previously mentioned mechanisms, it can be concluded that caloric
restriction/fasting has an important impact on skin. Figure 4 reports the main effects on skin
anatomy, homeostasis dynamics, and physiology, whereas Table 1 synthesizes animal models and
experiments of different fasting regimens showing the major effects of caloric restriction on skin.
Figure 3. The anti-aging effect of fasting. Abbreviations: CML (carboxymethyl lysine).
4.6. Fasting and Skin Effects: A Summary
Taking together all the previously mentioned mechanisms, it can be concluded that caloric
restriction/fasting has an important impact on skin. Figure 4reports the main effects on skin anatomy,
homeostasis dynamics, and physiology, whereas Table 1synthesizes animal models and experiments
of different fasting regimens showing the major effects of caloric restriction on skin.
Nutrients 2019,11, 249 8 of 15
Nutrients 2019, 11, x FOR PEER REVIEW 8 of 16
Figure 4. The major effects of fasting on skin anatomy, homeostasis dynamics and physiology.
Abbreviations: CML (carboxymethyl lysine); HSCs (hematopoietic stem cells); IGF-1 (insulin-like
growth factor 1); NKs (natural killers); P5C (pyrroline-5-carboxylate); SCs (stem cells); VEGF
(vascular endothelial growth factor).
Table 1. Summary of animal models and experiments showing different effects of various fasting
models on skin homeostasis dynamics.
Animal
model Fasting Regimen Results Explanation References
Swiss
Mice
Long term caloric
restriction to 60%
for 6 months
Maintained/preserved
thermal homeostasis
Maintenance of fur
due to increase of
HFSC pool
Expansion of dermal
vasculature due to
increased levels of
VEGF
Forni et al., 2017
[39]
Hairless
Mice Caloric restriction
Compromised stratum
corneum permeability
barrier
Decreased synthesis of
epidermal cholesterol
Wu-Pong et al.,
1994 [42]
UM-HET3
Mice
Caloric restriction
to 70% for 3–18
months
Decreased
retinoid-induced skin
irritation without
interfering with treatment
efficacy
Increased local
antioxidant levels
Inhibitory effect on
transcription of MMP
genes involved in
tissue destruction
Varani et al., 2008
[43]
Suri Mice
Short-term fast for
4 day/2weeks for 2
months
Enhancement of wound
healing
Increased MQ
production and
release of TNF-α and
VEGF
Hayati et al., 2011
[44]
Fisher-344
Rats
40% calorie
restricted diet
begun 48 h before
wounding and
continued during
healing
Delayed wound healing Decreased collagen
synthesis
Hunt et al., 2012
[45]
Rats
One time 72-hour
fast with access to
water only
Delayed wound healing
Decreased level of the
proline precursor,
P5C, resulting in
Miltyk and Palka,
2000 [46]
Figure 4.
The major effects of fasting on skin anatomy, homeostasis dynamics and physiology.
Abbreviations: CML (carboxymethyl lysine); HSCs (hematopoietic stem cells); IGF-1 (insulin-like
growth factor 1); NKs (natural killers); P5C (pyrroline-5-carboxylate); SCs (stem cells); VEGF (vascular
endothelial growth factor).
Table 1.
Summary of animal models and experiments showing different effects of various fasting
models on skin homeostasis dynamics.
Animal Model Fasting Regimen Results Explanation References
Swiss Mice Long term caloric restriction to
60% for 6 months
Maintained/preserved
thermal homeostasis
Maintenance of fur due to increase
of HFSC pool
Expansion of dermal vasculature
due to increased levels of VEGF
Forni et al., 2017 [38]
Hairless Mice Caloric restriction Compromised stratum
corneum permeability barrier
Decreased synthesis of epidermal
cholesterol Wu-Pong et al., 1994 [41]
UM-HET3 Mice Caloric restriction to 70% for
3–18 months
Decreased retinoid-induced
skin irritation without
interfering with treatment
efficacy
Increased local antioxidant levels
Inhibitory effect on transcription of
MMP genes involved in tissue
destruction
Varani et al., 2008 [42]
Suri Mice Short-term fast for 4
day/2weeks for 2 months
Enhancement of
wound healing
Increased MQ production and
release of TNF-αand VEGF Hayati et al., 2011 [43]
Fisher-344 Rats
40% calorie restricted diet begun
48 hours before wounding and
continued during healing
Delayed wound healing Decreased collagen synthesis Hunt et al., 2012 [44]
Rats One time 72-hour fast with
access to water only Delayed wound healing
Decreased level of the proline
precursor, P5C, resulting in
suppression of IGF-1 dependent
stimulation of collagen synthesis
Miltyk and Palka, 2000 [45]
Rats One time 72-hour fast with
access to water only Delayed wound healing
Decreased availability of IGF-1 due
to up-regulation of IGFBP-1 that has
high affinity to IGF-1
Cechowska-Pasko et al., 2003 [46]
Rats One time 72-hour fast with
access to water only Delayed wound healing
Decreased prolidase activity leading
to decreased proline salvage and
reduction of collagen synthesis
Cechowska-Pasko et al., 2004 [47]
Mice 2-day water-only fast before
chemotherapy
Protective effect against
toxic effects of
chemotherapy on HSCs
Decreased levels of IGF-1 and PKA,
resulting in modulation of HSC,
promoting self-renewal, lineage
regeneration and proliferation
Cheng et al., 2014 [48]
SENCAR Mice 20% calorie restricted diet for 5
days/week for 10 weeks Anti-carcinogenic role
Decrease in mitogenesis
downstream signaling cascade of
IGF-1 (PI3K-AKT and Ras-MAPK)
Xie et al., 2007 [52]
Rodent Long term 60%
caloric restriction Decreased aging
Decreased concentration of
glycoxidation products (CML and
pentosidine) in cutaneous collagen
Cefalu et al., 1995 [54]
Abbreviations: CML (carboxymethyl lysine); HFSC (hair follicle stem cells); HSC (hematopoietic stem cells); IGF-1:
insulin-like growth factor 1; IGFBP-1 (insulin-like growth factor binding protein 1); MAPK (mitogen activated
protein kinase); MMP (matrix metalloproteinase); MQ (macrophages); P5C (pyrroline-5-carboxylate); PI3K-AKT
(phosphoinositide3-kinase-protein kinase B); PKA (protein kinase A); TNF-
α
(tumor necrosis factor alpha); VEGF
(vascular endothelial growth factor).
Nutrients 2019,11, 249 9 of 15
5. Fasting and Autoimmune/Inflammatory Dermatoses
In addition to its significant role in the course of many metabolic and gastrointestinal disorders
such as diabetes and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) [
56
,
57
], dietary restriction can also influence
the progression of skin diseases [58], such as atopic eczema, psoriasis, and acne [59].
Lithell et al. reported an improvement of two chronic inflammatory dermatoses, atopic dermatitis
and pustulosis palmaris et plantaris, with intermittent fasting for two weeks. The results were associated
with a low concentration of unsaturated iron and lactoferrin, known for their anti-apoptotic effects on
neutrophils [60,61].
Other studies also indicated the amelioration of psoriatic lesions following caloric restriction.
This was imputed to the modulator effects of fasting on the immune system such as a decrease
in the activity of pro-inflammatory clusters of differentiation 4 (CD4) positive T helper (Th) cells
and an increase in anti-inflammatory cytokines secretions like IL-4, resulting in dampening of
inflammation [62].
Another study performed by Smith et al. in 2008 has shown the beneficial impact of caloric
restriction on acne vulgaris lesions. This was explained by decreased sebum production, which thereby
counterbalances one of the main factors in the pathogenesis of acne vulgaris [
63
]. Sebaceous glands
are small oil-producing glands present in the skin of mammals and produce sebum. Excess sebum
results in surface oiliness and blocked pores, providing nourishment to bacteria that live on the skin
(in particular, Propionibacterium acnes or P. acnes) and contributes to acne flare-ups. Some emergent
studies seem to support the idea that diet and acne may be, at least in part, connected. Some studies
found a strong relationship between a fasting type diet and acne in human adults and young subjects.
In fact, during the period of caloric restriction, sebum level was found to be reduced by 40%, which
influenced the degree of acne severity [
64
,
65
]. However, these results were observed during severe
caloric restriction (<100 calories per day) with a reversed increase following normal diet.
Prurigo pigmentosa (PP), first described by Nagashima et al. in 1971, is defined as a rare
inflammatory skin disorder, characterized by itchy, reticulated, and erythematous plaques or papules.
A possible role of the ketoacidotic status associated with fasting and dietary restriction has been
implicated in the pathogenesis of the disease.
Hijazi and collaborators identified 4 cases of PP with the help of the dermatopathology database;
3 out of these patients reported the coincidence of their skin condition with fasting [66].
6. Fasting and Skin Cancer
The impact of fasting regimen on skin cancer has been investigated by some studies. For instance,
Corazzari et al. explored the effect of the combination of antiblastics (such as cisplatin) with calorie
restriction protocols (nutrient deprivation) in models of wild type and mutated BRAFV600E melanoma
cell lines. Fasting was found to increase the sensitivity of tumor cell lines to cisplatin-induced
cells, and also of those cell lines particularly resistant to any pharmacological treatment. From a
mechanistic standpoint, cell death (but not autophagy) accounted for this effect: more in detail,
apoptosis was fostered by the reactive oxygen species (ROS) accumulation and expression of the
Activating transcription factor 4 also known as ATF4 in the absence of endoplasmic reticulum-stress.
Moreover, authors found that exposure to 2-deoxy-D-glucose further increased this effect in a model
of SK Mel 28 cell lines [67].
In another study, fasting was found to modulate the IGF-1 receptor (IGF-1R)/epithelial growth
factor (EGF) receptor (EGFR) and the Akt/mTOR pathways, which are dysregulated in obesity and
may lead to skin cancer [68].
7. Ramadan, Chronotherapy and Skin
Every cell of the body is involved in a state of adaptation in order to maximize its function and cope
with challenges associated with the circadian rhythm. Not surprisingly, skin has cycles of physiological
Nutrients 2019,11, 249 10 of 15
and functional changes highly influenced by the internal master clock [
69
71
]. The circadian rhythm is
mastered by the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) of the hypothalamus stimulated by light entering the
retina; however, due to the unique position of the skin and its exposure to the external environment,
it is plausible to consider the skin as a peripheral clock receiving various stimuli such as humidity,
UV, pollutants, and changes in temperature. Other peripheral clocks include muscles, fat and liver,
among others.
Accordingly, many physiological properties of the skin, including trans-epidermal water
loss (TEWL), hydration, capillary blood flow, temperature, sebum production, and keratinocyte
proliferation, undergo periodicity during the day [
69
71
]. This, indeed, supports the use of a
“chronotherapeutic approach” in the systemic administration as well as the topical application of certain
medications to maximize the therapeutic effects and minimizing the adverse reactions. For example,
the barrier function of the skin is more compromised at night with an increase in TEWL, cutaneous
blood flow, adaptive immune activity, release of pro-inflammatory cytokines and histamine, while
the secretion of corticosteroid typically decreases, which can explain the reported circadian rhythm
of some dermatoses, in particular inflammatory and itchy diseases. Therefore, the typical timing for
treatments like emollients, anti-inflammatory drugs including corticosteroids, and anti-histamines is
typically in the evening [7181].
Similarly, since the proliferation of epidermal stem cells is higher during sleep hours, the ideal
timing for immuno-modulators such as retinoids, azathioprine, methotrexate, and Apremilast is the
evening to optimize their anti-inflammatory and anti-proliferative effects and minimize their side
effects as seen in decreasing the gastrointestinal and hematological adverse reactions in a mouse model
with a night dose of mycophenlate mofetil. Biological therapy is best administrated in the evening to
counterbalance the night surge of pro-inflammatory cytokines [82,83].
Changes in the sleep-wake cycle was reported with intermittent fasting during the holy month
of Ramadan, particularly in the first two weeks. A study by BaHammam and colleagues in 2010 has
investigated the alterations in circadian rhythms among six healthy Muslim men with flexible working
hours through the month, using sensor devices. Interestingly, all the subjects reported a shift of their
sleep cycle, so that they were mainly sleeping during the day and working and eating during the night.
This was, indeed, accompanied by a delay in the acrophase of their cutaneous temperature, as well as
their energy expenditure [84].
Accordingly, this change in the circadian rhythm should be taken into consideration when
prescribing medications to the patients; however, a problem of potential non-compliance could be
encountered since, for cultural habits and beliefs, the oral administration of these medications during
the day will be considered as a break in the fasting. Furthermore, the problem of non-adherence
is not only limited to systemic drugs, but some Muslims even avoid the use of topical medications
during the Ramadan fasting. A prospective survey, investigating the development of dermatological
disorders during the Ramadan fasting, was carried out by Patel and co-authors at one of the tertiary
hospitals in the UK. The study included 35 men and 40 women. The authors reported the eruption
of cutaneous disorders such as eczema in 13 individuals, psoriasis, acne vulgaris and psoriasis in
8 patients, in addition to vitiligo, rosacea, urticaria and hair loss. Interestingly, more than one third
of the participants denied the use of any topical treatment during fasting, which they considered
breaching of their fast. This quite widespread belief was not limited to specific age group, gender,
socioeconomic status, or educational level [85].
8. Future Prospects
Dietary interventions/manipulations represent a promising approach for treating, managing
and, at least partially, preventing skin disorders. Despite such important practical implications,
this topic has been neglected in the existing scholarly literature, when it deserves further research.
High-quality randomized controlled trials (RCTs) should be conducted to systematically explore
and compare different fasting protocols, including the use of vegetables and fruits for caloric and
Nutrients 2019,11, 249 11 of 15
metabolic manipulations. For instance, consumption of foods rich in polyphenols protects against UV
and exerts photoprotective effects, counteracting or mitigating UV-induced skin inflammatory status,
proliferation, DNA damage and dysregulation of several cellular networks and pathways, including
immune responses [86].
9. Conclusions
Despite the fact that the month of Ramadan represents a living laboratory in which different
working hypotheses (anti-aging, anti-carcinogenesic, and pro-wound healing effects of fasting) can be
tested
in vivo
, its importance for clinical investigations that could have broad, significant translational
implications has been overlooked.
In particular, the following knowledge gaps can be listed:
(1) There is a strong need for evidence-based suggestions and guidelines. Literature on the impact
of the Ramadan fasting as well as of other fasting regimens on skin diseases is scarce and of poor
quality, as well as information available from the Internet. Instead, chronotherapy and chronomedicine
should be taken into account and further explored;
(2) Few studies have been conducted, recruiting small convenience samples, with high
non-responder rates;
(3) The impact of the Ramadan fasting on skin health could be compared with the effect of other
kinds of fasting, including periodic diet, calorie restriction, dietary restriction, dietary manipulation,
intermittent, short-term, and prolonged fasting.
However, despite the dearth of studies on the topic, based also on our clinical experience, the
following recommendations can be made:
(1) No serious risks for health have been so far reported and, therefore, patients willing to fast
should be advised about the importance of continuing their treatment and that administration of
trans-dermal/topical drugs is licit during the Ramadan fasting;
(2) Non-compliance and non-adherence can have important clinical and economic implications
for patient management; therefore, patient education and empowerment play a major role;
(3) Physicians should be instructed in recognizing rare dermatological disorders associated with
fasting, such as PP;
(4) Further larger, high-quality studies are still needed in order to fill in the above-mentioned
knowledge gaps.
Funding:
This research received no external funding. RC is supported by the 5 T32 AR 7569- 22 National Institute
of Health T32 grant; RC and GD are supported by the P50 AR 070590 01A1 National Institute of Arthritis and
Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases.
Conflicts of Interest: The authors declare no conflict of interest.
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2019 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access
article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution
(CC BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
... The antidepressant effects of calorie restriction might be based on the molecular basis that involves orexin signaling, p-CREB/BDNF signaling and other neuroendocrine system 21 . One study shows Significant decreases in tension, anger, confusion and total mood disturbance and improvements in vigor were observed in participants in the FCR (fasting & calorie restriction) group compared to the control group 22 . Short-term fasting in inpatients with pain and stress syndromes is safe and well tolerated. ...
... Short-term fasting in inpatients with pain and stress syndromes is safe and well tolerated. Prolonged fasting as a method of mood enhancement in chronic pain syndromes 22 . ...
Article
Objective - Ayurveda is the oldest keen knowledge of life sciences, cure and healthcare. The sutras in samhita have to be enlightened in term of modern sciences. This article presents simplified yet scientific decoding of the sign of proper Langhana mentioned in Charak samhita. Methods - Several studies by researchers available on website as Pub med, Google scholar, Scopus, collected to explain different sign of proper Langhana (Fasting) and detail review of different Ayurveda literatures to explore Samyak Langhan Lakshan. Conclusion- fating have a direct and good effect on gastrointestinal colonial bacteria, gastrointestinal reflex, kidney function, hypertension, obesity, mental condition, thermal homeostasis of skin, eating behavior, BMI, Ghrelin hormone and glycogen metabolism. Those all factor is responsible to present the proper sign of complete Langhan.
... Several groups have investigated the impact of RF on common skin and skeletal conditions and anticoagulation therapy. [66] Patients with various health problems, including those with different skin disorders, might choose to share this event with peers and family members. Bragazzi et al. [66] carried out a comprehensive overview on the topic covering all forms of fasting including RF. Damiani et al. [67] described the effect of RF in 55 patients with a relatively long duration of hidradenitis suppurativa (HS). ...
... [66] Patients with various health problems, including those with different skin disorders, might choose to share this event with peers and family members. Bragazzi et al. [66] carried out a comprehensive overview on the topic covering all forms of fasting including RF. Damiani et al. [67] described the effect of RF in 55 patients with a relatively long duration of hidradenitis suppurativa (HS). RF proved to be safe and effective in HS patients. ...
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Review Article Introduction: Literature on the health aspects of Ramadan fasting (RF) is widespread in many journals, making it less readily available to those interested in the subject. Materials and Methods: This is a narrative, nonsystematic review of international literature from two major online databases (viz., Scopus and PubMed) in 1 year (2019). The search term "RF" was used, and relevant literature was narrated in a concise thematic account excluding diabetes. Results: The publications spanned the fundamental, clinical, ethical, professional, cultural, and advocacy facets of the subject. The publications crossed the conventional disciplinary lines and geographical locations and appeared in journals with different access systems. The content is presented under relevant themes depending on the available literature. Basic coverage included changes in physiology, nutrition, and metabolism during Ramadan. Clinical aspects such as the impact of RF on kidney function, pregnancy outcome, fetal life, structure and function of eyes, and athletes' well-being received comparatively prominent coverage by researchers in 2019. Gut, liver, skin, skeleton, and blood were also covered. Other workers focused on documenting the perception, attitudes, and practices of both patients and health-care professionals during Ramadan. Conclusions: The health aspects of RF received sustained academic interest with a wide spectrum in 2019. We provided a scoping overview to help researchers and clinicians catch up quickly with the state-of-the-art today.
... La peau est un organe complexe très étendu qui couvre une surface de presque 2m 2 et représente environ 20% du poids total d'un corps humain adulte. Situé à l'interface entre le corps humain et l'environnement extérieur, c'est une barrière protectrice importante contre les agents physiques, chimiques ou microbiologiques (Bragazzi et al., 2019). Exerçant également un rôle sensoriel, de régulation thermique ou encore de réserve énergétique, elle est essentielle au bon fonctionnement de l'organisme (Holloway and Jones, 2005). ...
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Le mélanome, cancer de la peau au fort potentiel métastatique, représente aujourd’hui plus de 280 000 cas, dont plus de 60 000 décès, chaque année dans le monde. Lorsqu’il atteint un stade métastatique, la mortalité de ce cancer augmente drastiquement et le taux de survie à 5 ans n’est plus que de 25%. En effet, malgré les progrès significatifs apportés ces dix dernières années dans la prise en charge thérapeutique du mélanome métastatique avec l’arrivée des thérapies ciblées et des immunothérapies, plus de 50% des patients ne disposent pas de solution thérapeutique leur procurant une réponse efficace à long-terme. Aujourd’hui, il est donc primordial de trouver de nouvelles stratégies thérapeutiques pour ces patients.Après s’être intéressé aux propriétés anticancéreuses de la Metformine, une molécule utilisée initialement en tant qu’antidiabétique, notre laboratoire a développé des composés dérivés de cette molécule en collaboration avec l’Institut de Chimie de Nice (ICN) afin d’améliorer les propriétés pharmacocinétiques et d’amplifier l’effet antinéoplasique de la Metformine, jusqu’alors insuffisant(es) pour apporter un bénéfice chez l’Homme atteint d’un mélanome en monothérapie (essai clinique NCT01840007). Nous avons alors identifié un composé, le CRO15, capable d’induire la mort des cellules cancéreuses à des doses 1000 fois moins importantes que la Metformine. Cette molécule provoque la mort des cellules cancéreuses par autophagie et apoptose par plusieurs mécanismes moléculaires. D’une part, le CRO15 va induire une perturbation de la respiration mitochondriale et provoquer l’activation de la voie AMPK. D’autre part, la molécule va inhiber directement la kinase MELK, un oncogène surexprimé dans de nombreux cancers, ce qui va induire l’activation de la protéine p53. Les deux voies induisent alors conjointement l’expression de la protéine REDD1, responsable de la mort cellulaire observée. De plus, dans des xénogreffes de cellules de mélanome chez la souris, CRO15 est capable de provoquer la diminution de la croissance tumorale.Ensuite, étant donné les effets de la Metformine sur la réponse immunitaire antitumorale, notamment via l’activation de la voie AMPK, nous nous sommes intéressés au rôle de CRO15 dans cette réponse. Nous avons alors montré dans un modèle de carcinome de colon que CRO15 induisait, in vivo, la potentialisation de la réponse aux anti-PD1 en termes de survie et de croissance tumorale chez des souris immunocompétentes.L’analyse des populations immunitaires infiltrant la tumeur indique que CRO15 induirait une diminution des macrophages M2 dans ces tumeurs. De plus, nous avons montré in vitro que notre composé modulait la polarisation des macrophages humains en induisant la diminution de l’expression des marqueurs de surface M2, principalement. Bien qu’elles doivent être approfondies, ces données suggèrent qu’en plus de provoquer un effet cytotoxique dans les cellules cancéreuses, CRO15 serait capable de moduler la réponse immunitaire antitumorale pour favoriser l’élimination de la tumeur. Cette molécule serait donc un candidat prometteur dans le cadre de l’élaboration d’une nouvelle stratégie thérapeutique contre le mélanome et d’autres cancers solides.
... Pharmaceuticals 2021,14, 1215 ...
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Presently, notwithstanding the progress regarding wound-healing management, the treatment of the majority of skin lesions still represents a serious challenge for biomedical and pharmaceutical industries. Thus, the attention of the researchers has turned to the development of novel materials based on cellulose derivatives. Cellulose derivatives are semi-synthetic biopolymers, which exhibit high solubility in water and represent an advantageous alternative to water-insoluble cellulose. These biopolymers possess excellent properties, such as biocompatibility, biodegradability, sustainability, non-toxicity, non-immunogenicity, thermo-gelling behavior, mechanical strength, abundance, low costs, antibacterial effect, and high hydrophilicity. They have an efficient ability to absorb and retain a large quantity of wound exudates in the interstitial sites of their networks and can maintain optimal local moisture. Cellulose derivatives also represent a proper scaffold to incorporate various bioactive agents with beneficial therapeutic effects on skin tissue restoration. Due to these suitable and versatile characteristics, cellulose derivatives are attractive and captivating materials for wound-healing applications. This review presents an extensive overview of recent research regarding promising cellulose derivatives-based materials for the development of multiple biomedical and pharmaceutical applications, such as wound dressings, drug delivery devices, and tissue engineering.
... Skin comprises major part of the body; it occupies the surface area of 2 m 2 and accompanies 20% of total body weight in an adult [6]. ...
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Administration of drug via skin has some limitations such as skin barrier, solubility of drug and partition coefficient etc. Stratum corneum which is an outer skin layer, acts as a barrier to the skin. Thus, prodrug has some applications to improve skin permeability. Prodrugs are defined as the compounds which are initially inactive but covert into their active form when reacted with several chemicals or enzymes at particular active site of body to show its desirable effect for a particular disease or condition. In skin permeability experiments, various vehicles can be used such as propylene glycol, short chain glycerides, dimethyl acetamide, cyclodextrins, N-Methylpyrrolidone, azones, surfactants etc. Some mechanisms of prodrugs to improve skin permeation include, increase in partition coefficient of skin, enhanced solubilization of drug, decrease in crystal formation and modification in chemical structure of the drug. Apart from prodrug, the use of effective vehicle is of greater importance as well. As an example, for application of prodrug to improve skin permeation, two case studies have been discussed. Case study-1 includes the study of skin permeation using prodrug strategy for an opioid analgesic, Buprenorphine. In this study, the permeation of buprenorphine and its three alkyl esters across full thickness hairless mouse skin was evaluated. Thus, only acetyl buprenorphine appeared to be promising as a prodrug. In case study-2, antiviral drug acyclovir was esterified to obtain ester prodrugs of acyclovir. Hence, the five prodrugs of acyclovir showed similar skin permeability and amongst them, only acyclovir hexanoate showed 300- fold larger partition coefficient which depicts two times higher skin permeation than acyclovir. This review portrays the synthesis of prodrug to improve the skin permeability by applying enhancement mechanisms.
... [3][4][5][6][7][8][9] While some effects of ICF (for instance, on infectious, ocular, psychiatric, neurological, oncological, endocrinological, or renal diseases) have been investigated [4][5][6][7][8][9] its impact on dermatological disorders has been relatively overlooked in the existing scholarly literature. [10][11][12][13] Since the diet remains almost the same and the only ICF variant is the feeding time, the chronobiological impact of ICF is capable to impact patients health status. [14][15][16] Recently, chronobiology aspects have been incorporated in the conventional medicine resulting in a completely novel approach to both diseases and therapies, the chronomedicine. ...
Article
Full-text available
BACKGROUND The impact of intermittent circadian fasting (ICF) on skin disorders is far to be plenty deciphered. However, the circadian rhythm seems to exert a modulation on dermatoses severity, drug‐response and drug‐related side effects. OBJECTIVES To evaluate ICF effect in the daily management of dermatoses. METHODS In this multicenter, prospective observational study cohort study we enrolled patients willing to undergo the 2018 ICF (from May 16 to June 14). Patients' dermatoses severity were evaluated the at the beginning of ICF (T0) and at the end of ICF (T1) by two independent board‐certified dermatologists. RESULTS Seventy‐two patients suffering from different dermatoses volunteered to take part into the study. Mean age (standard deviation [SD]) was 40.38 ± 12.46 years (median 41.0 years), 25 subjects were males (34.7% of the entire sample). The median of change in weight was 0 kg. The overall effect size of the ICF was ‐0.58 ([95% CI ‐0.83 to ‐0.33], p < 0.0001, medium effect size). Since in the present investigation no body weight loss occurred, we could speculate that the impact of fasting in terms of improvements in the clinical symptoms could be rather due to the perturbation of the human biological clock. CONCLUSIONS Despite our data remain preliminary, a chronobiological approach should be incorporated in the dermatological clinical practice. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
Article
Objective: Ultraviolet light is an important environmental factor that induces skin oxidation, inflammation, and other diseases. Nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN) has the effect of anti-oxidation and improving various physiological processes. This study explores the protective effect of NMN monomers given via intraperitoneal injection on UVB-induced photodamage. Methods: We used a murine model of UVB-induced photodamage to evaluate the effect of an NMN monomer on photoaging skin by assessing skin and liver tissue sections, serum and skin oxidative stress levels, inflammatory markers, mRNA expression, and protein expression of skin- and liver-related genes. Results: The results showed that NMN treatment blocked UVB-induced photodamage in mice, maintaining normal structure and amount of collagen fibers, normal thickness of epidermis and dermis, reducing the production of mast cells, and maintaining complete organized skin structure. NMN intraperitoneal injection also maintained the normal morphology of the mouse liver after UVB exposure. Meanwhile, NMN intraperitoneal injection was found to increase antioxidant ability and regulate the proinflammatory response of the skin and liver to UVB irradiation by enhancing the activity of antioxidant enzymes, release of anti-inflammatory cytokines, reduction of hydrogen peroxide production (H2O2), and decreased inflammatory cytokines. Furthermore, RT-qPCR results indicated that NMN reduced oxidative stress of skin and liver by promoting the activation of the AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) signaling pathway and further increasing the expression of downstream antioxidant genes of AMPK. RT-qPCR results also revealed that NMN treatment could downregulate the mRNA expression of interleukin (IL)-6, interleukin (IL)-1β, and tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α, and upregulate NF-kappa-B inhibitor-α (IκB-α) and interleukin (IL)-10 by inhibiting the activation of nuclear factor-κBp65 (NFκB-p65). Finally, NMN upregulated AMPK, IκB-α, SOD1, and CAT in the skin and downregulated NF-κBp65 protein expression, which is in line with the RT-qPCR results. Conclusion: Based on the above results, NMN monomer treatment with intraperitoneal injection also block the photodamage caused by UVB irradiation in mice by regulating the oxidative stress response and inflammatory response.
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Organisms have an evolutionarily conserved internal rhythm that helps them anticipate and adapt to daily changes in the environment. Synchronized to the light‐dark cycle with a period of around 24 hours, the timing of the circadian clock is set by light‐triggering signals sent from the retina to the suprachiasmatic nucleus. Other inputs, including food intake, exercise, and temperature, also affect clocks in peripheral tissues, including skin. Here, we review the intricate interplay between the core clock network and fundamental physiological processes in skin such as homeostasis, regeneration, immune and stress responses. We illustrate the effect of feeding time on the skin circadian clock and skin function, a previously overlooked area of research. We then discuss works that relate the circadian clock and its disruption to skin diseases, including skin cancer, sunburn, hair loss, aging, infections, inflammatory skin diseases, and wound healing. Finally, we highlight the promise of circadian medicine for skin disease prevention and management.
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A diverse range of normal flora populates the human skin and numbers are relatively different between individuals and parts of the skin. Humans and normal flora have formed a symbiotic relationship over a period of time. With numerous disease processes, the interaction between the host and normal flora can be interrupted. Unlike normal wound healing, which is complex and crucial to sustaining the skin’s physical barrier, chronic wounds, especially in diabetes, are wounds that fail to heal in a timely manner. The conditions become favorable for microbes to colonize and establish infections within the skin. These include secretions of various kinds of molecules, substances or even trigger the immune system to attack other cells required for wound healing. Additionally, the healing process can be slowed down by prolonging the inflammatory phase and delaying the wound repair process, which causes further destruction to the tissue. Antibiotics and wound dressings become the targeted therapy to treat chronic wounds. Though healing rates are improved, prolonged usage of these treatments could become ineffective or microbes may become resistant to the treatments. Considering all these factors, more studies are needed to comprehensively elucidate the role of human skin normal flora at the cellular and molecular level in a chronic injury. This article will review wound healing physiology and discuss the role of normal flora in the skin and chronic wounds.
Chapter
The diversity of patients utilizing healthcare and their respective needs from providers are rapidly evolving. In order to meet the demands of a diversifying patient population, dermatologists must understand the health disparities that many patients of minority groups experience. Furthermore, addressing these disparities will require comprehension of the many cultural differences that may present a barrier to care for these patients, such as language, religious, and political differences, and acquisition of the appropriate skills to provide high quality dermatologic care to diverse patients, termed cultural competency. The ethical principles of justice and beneficence underlie the need for culturally competent and high-quality care for all patients, regardless of differences in culture.
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Knowledge in the role of plant-based diets on health had been shaped in part by cohort studies on vegetarians. We revisited publications from two ongoing longitudinal studies comprising large proportions of vegetarians—the Adventist Health Study-2 (AHS-2) and the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition-Oxford (EPIC-Oxford)—to describe the food and nutrient intake, health effects, and environmental sustainability outcomes of the dietary patterns identified in these studies. The vegetarian diet groups in both cohorts have essentially no meat intake, lower intake of fish and coffee, and higher intakes of vegetables and fruits compared to their non-vegetarian counterparts. In the AHS-2 cohort, vegetarians have higher intake of whole grains, legumes, nuts, and seeds. Vegans in AHS-2 have 16% reduced risk while vegans, vegetarians, and fish-eaters in EPIC-Oxford have 11–19% lower risk for all cancers compared to non-vegetarians. Pesco-vegetarians in the AHS-2 cohort had significantly lower mortality risk from all causes and ischemic heart disease while EPIC-Oxford fish-eaters had significantly lower all-cancers mortality risk than their non-vegetarians counterparts. Morbidity risks and prevalence rates for other chronic diseases were differentially reported in the two cohorts but vegetarians have lower risk than non-vegetarians. Greenhouse gas emissions of equicaloric diets are 29% less in vegetarian diet in AHS-2 and 47–60% less for vegetarian/vegan diets in EPIC-Oxford than non-vegetarian/meat-eating diets. The beneficial health outcomes and reduced carbon footprints make the case for adoption of vegetarian diets to address global food supply and environmental sustainability.
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Background Metabolic flexibility is the ability of cells to change substrates for energy production based on the nutrient availability and energy requirement. It has been shown that metabolic flexibility is impaired in obesity and chronic diseases such as type 2 diabetes mellitus, cardiovascular diseases, and metabolic syndrome, although, whether it is a cause or an effect of these conditions remains to be elucidated. Main body In this paper, we have reviewed the literature on metabolic flexibility and curated pathways and processes resulting in a network resource to investigate the interplay between these processes in the subcutaneous adipose tissue. The adipose tissue has been shown to be responsible, not only for energy storage but also for maintaining energy homeostasis through oxidation of glucose and fatty acids. We highlight the role of pyruvate dehydrogenase complex–pyruvate dehydrogenase kinase (PDC-PDK) interaction as a regulatory switch which is primarily responsible for changing substrates in energy metabolism from glucose to fatty acids and back. Baseline gene expression of the subcutaneous adipose tissue, along with a publicly available obesity data set, are visualised on the cellular network of metabolic flexibility to highlight the genes that are expressed and which are differentially affected in obesity. Conclusion We have constructed an abstracted network covering glucose and fatty acid oxidation, as well as the PDC-PDK regulatory switch. In addition, we have shown how the network can be used for data visualisation and as a resource for follow-up studies. Electronic supplementary material The online version of this article (10.1186/s12263-018-0609-3) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
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The skin is a highly organized first line of defense that stretches up to 1.8 m2 and is home to more than a million commensal bacteria. The microenvironment of skin is driven by factors such as pH, temperature, moisture, sebum level, oxidative stress, diet, resident immune cells, and infectious exposure. The skin has a high turnover of cells as it continually bares itself to environmental stresses. Notwithstanding these limitations, it has devised strategies to adapt as a nutrient-scarce site. To perform its protective function efficiently, it relies on mechanisms to continuously remove dead cells without alarming the immune system, actively purging the dying/senescent cells by immunotolerant efferocytosis. Both canonical (starvation-induced, reactive oxygen species, stress, and environmental insults) and non-canonical (selective) autophagy in the skin have evolved to perform astute due-diligence and housekeeping in a quiescent fashion for survival, cellular functioning, homeostasis, and immune tolerance. The autophagic “homeostatic rheostat” works tirelessly to uphold the delicate balance in immunoregulation and tolerance. If this equilibrium is upset, the immune system can wreak havoc and initiate pathogenesis. Out of all the organs, the skin remains under-studied in the context of autophagy. Here, we touch upon some of the salient features of autophagy active in the skin.
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