Evaluation of Efficacy and Tolerance of a Nighttime Topical Antioxidant Containing Resveratrol, Baicalin, and Vitamin E for Treatment of Mild to Moderately Photodamaged Skin

December 2014 | Volume 13 | Issue 12 | Original Article | 1467 | Copyright © 2014

Patricia Farris MD,a Margarita Yatskayer MS,b Nannan Chen PhD,b Yevgeniy Krol BS,c Christian Oresajo PhDb

aDepartment of Dermatology, Tulane University, New Orleans, LA
bL’Oréal Research and Innovation, Clark, NJ
cSkinceuticals, NewYork, NY


Resveratrol is an effective anti-aging molecule with diverse biologic activity. It functions as a dual antioxidant that can neutralize free radicals and increase intrinsic antioxidant capacity. Additionally resveratrol increases mitochondrial biogenesis and has anti-inflammatory, anti-diabetic, and anti-cancer activity. In this paper we will focus on the use of topically applied resveratrol using a proprietary blend containing 1% resveratrol, 0.5% baicalin, and 1% vitamin E. This stabilized high concentration formulation demonstrates percutaneous absorption and alterations in gene expression such as hemoxygenase-1 (HO-1), vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGFA), and collagen 3 (COL3A1). Clinical assessment showed a statistically significant improvement in fine lines and wrinkles, skin firmness, skin elasticity, skin laxity, hyperpigmentation, radiance, and skin roughness over baseline in 12 weeks. Ultrasound measurements in the periorbital area showed an average improvement of 18.9% in dermal thickness suggesting significant dermal remodeling. These studies confirm that topical resveratrol, baicalin, and vitamin E are valuable ingredient that can be used for skin rejuvenation.

J Drugs Dermatol. 2014;13(12):1467-1472.

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Skin aging is an intricate biological process composed of two distinct but overlapping events. Extrinsic aging or photoaging is an extensively researched process by which chronic exposure to environmental factors such as UV irradiation, manifests clinically as coarse lines and wrinkles, telangiectasia, mottled pigmentation, sallowness, coarseness, and most importantly malignant neoplasms.1 Intrinsic aging or chronological aging is an even more complex process visibly expressed as thin, pale and finely wrinkled skin. These two processes display divergent phenotypes with photoaging characterized by a hyperkeratotic thickened epidermis and increase in elastin accumulation in the dermis. In contrast chronological aging demonstrates an overall loss of the extracellular matrix, hypocellularity in the dermis, and a flattening of the dermal-epidermal junction.2 However, these two degenerative processes intersect at the origin of their damage arising from a state of oxidative stress, or more specifically the accumulation of Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS).

Resveratrol (3,5,4’-trihydroxy-trans-stilbine) is found in many plant species such as grapes, berries, and peanuts. It exhibits pleiotropic health beneficial effects, including antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antitumor activities.3 Baicalin (scutellaria baicalensis, is a widely used herb in the traditional medical systems of China and Japan. The major constituents of S. baicalensis are a group of polyhydroxy phenols that include baicalin. The antioxidant effects of baicalin have been demonstrated in in vitro and in vivo experiments using both the extract and its active flavonoids. Baicalin provides antioxidant protection by scavenging radicals. Compared to many conventional antioxidants, baicalin was found to be more effective as a free radical scavenger in cultured fibroblasts.4 Topical baicalin application mitigates DNA photodamage, therefore making it a promising protective substance against UVB radiation.5,6 Additionally, baicalin treatment effectively protected human fibroblasts from UVA radiation-induced aging responses, suggesting that the underlying mechanism involves the inhibition of oxidative damage and regulation of the expression of senescence- related genes.7 Resveratrol and baicalin physicochemical properties limit the ability to incorporate them into a topical formulation due to their inherently low water solubility. In order to achieve optimum levels of resveratrol and baicalin for topical application, it is possible to utilize hydrotropic agents to enhance the solubility and cutaneous penetration. Vitamin E is a strong peroxyl radical scavenger, preventing the propagation of free radicals in tissues. Attesting to the lipophilic nature of vitamin E, it can easily be incorporated into cell membranes to protect against oxidative damage at the outer layer region of the cell. The concentration of vitamin E is generally lower in the epidermis of photodamaged and aged skin.

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