It is not easy to penetrate the skin's protective barrier, as it is our defence against toxins and other external damage. But the fact that certain components in moisturizers can cross this barrier could be used to deliver medication for certain skin disorders.
US researchers have used regular shop-bought moisturizer as a vehicle to deliver anti-cancer particles to within the epidermis. The scientists prepared, and mixed in with moisturizer, gold cores surrounded by nucleic acid nanoparticles (siRNA) that targeted the genes responsible for rapid cancer cell growth. Once applied to the skin, the active ingredients proved to be highly effective. The simplicity implied by using moisturizers rather than liposomes or peptides for delivery opens up a new avenue for gene therapy to treat skin inflammations and melanoma.
International experts are warning us yet again: the number of melanoma cases is growing fast. Too much sun is considered to be the most direct cause of melanoma, which develops in the skin and can be fatal. Prevention is the best way to fight skin cancers. So what can we do to avoid developing melanoma?
Skin cancers are the most frequent kind of cancer; 30% of Spanish people, for example, develop some form of this cancer. Melanoma is the most aggressive kind and, unfortunately, is the one that is experiencing most growth. These are the conclusions of the 6th World Meeting of Interdisciplinary Melanoma Skin Cancer Centres, which brought together around 1000 doctors and researchers from all over the world in Barcelona last November. Read More
People who use artificial sunlight to get a tan in record time may pay a heavy price in the long run. This is demonstrated by recent studies that link exposure to ultraviolet radiation from tanning beds with a high risk of developing skin cancer.
“May cause cancer”: this message, displayed in tanning beds in some countries, warns of the risks of exposure to artificial ultraviolet radiation. By now, 11 European countries (Spain in 2002) have banned minors from using tanning beds, with the state of California in the USA following suit more recently. Even more dramatically, in 2009 Brazil totally banned tanning beds (for both adults and children). Such restrictions are not unwarranted. Read More
It is important to protect the skin from the sun, as it promotes skin ageing and the appearance of blemishes, especially after the age of 40. Do such blemishes affect our health? Is there any way to prevent them?
Time does not forgive. As we get older our skin changes: it becomes increasingly drier and thinner and the number of wrinkles and blemishes increases. These age spots, or solar lentigines, are the result of years of exposure to sunlight or other forms of ultraviolet light (for instance, in tanning booths). They usually occur in the most exposed areas of the skin (the back of the hands, the face, shoulders, forearms and feet). Read More