Document Detail

UV photoprotection by combination topical antioxidants vitamin C and vitamin E.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  12789176     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
BACKGROUND: Virtually all plants and animals protect themselves from the sun using vitamins C and E. OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to see if a combination of topical vitamins C and E is better for UV protection to skin than an equivalent concentration of topical vitamin C or E alone. METHODS: We developed a stable aqueous solution of 15% L-ascorbic acid (vitamin C) and 1% alpha-tocopherol (vitamin E). We applied antioxidant or vehicle solutions to pig skin daily for 4 days. We irradiated (1-5x minimal erythema dose) control- and antioxidant-treated skin using a solar simulator with a 295-nm band-pass filter. On day 5, we measured antioxidant protection factor, erythema, sunburn cells, and thymine dimers. RESULTS: The combination of 15% L-ascorbic acid and 1% alpha-tocopherol provided significant protection against erythema and sunburn cell formation; either L-ascorbic acid or 1% alpha-tocopherol alone also was protective but the combination was superior. Application during 4 days provided progressive protection that yielded an antioxidant protection factor of 4-fold. In addition, the combination of vitamins C and E provided protection against thymine dimer formation. CONCLUSION: Appreciable photoprotection can be obtained from the combination of topical vitamins C and E. We suggest that these natural products may protect against skin cancer and photoaging.
Jing-Yi Lin; M Angelica Selim; Christopher R Shea; James M Grichnik; Mostafa M Omar; Nancy A Monteiro-Riviere; Sheldon R Pinnell
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't; Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology     Volume:  48     ISSN:  0190-9622     ISO Abbreviation:  J. Am. Acad. Dermatol.     Publication Date:  2003 Jun 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2003-06-05     Completed Date:  2003-07-14     Revised Date:  2007-11-14    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  7907132     Medline TA:  J Am Acad Dermatol     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  866-74     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Medicine, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC 27710, USA.
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MeSH Terms
Antioxidants / administration & dosage,  therapeutic use*
Ascorbic Acid / administration & dosage,  therapeutic use*
Drug Combinations
Erythema / prevention & control
Pyrimidine Dimers / biosynthesis
Sunburn / prevention & control*
Vitamin E / administration & dosage,  therapeutic use*
Grant Support
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Antioxidants; 0/Drug Combinations; 0/Pyrimidine Dimers; 1406-18-4/Vitamin E; 50-81-7/Ascorbic Acid

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