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Acta Derm Venereol. 2007;87(1):4-8.

In vivo estimation of stratum corneum thickness from water concentration profiles obtained with Raman spectroscopy.

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Life Science Research Center, Shiseido Co., 2-2-1 Hayabuchi, Tsuzuki-ku, Yokohama, Japan.


Stratum corneum thickness was estimated from water concentration profiles of the skin measured by a confocal Raman spectrometer. Stratum corneum apparent thickness (SCAT) was defined as the depth where the water content reached an almost constant value. Site variations were determined using 15 healthy Japanese subjects (6 males, 9 females), and age variations at the cheek and forearm were examined using 27 female Japanese subjects. There were marked site variations in mean SCAT; 16.8 microm for cheek, 22.6 microm for volar forearm, 29.3 microm for back of the hand, and 173.0 microm for palm. These variations were similar to reported stratum corneum thickness values obtained in biopsy tissues. The SCAT tended to become age-dependently thicker at the forearm, but not at the cheek. In addition, SCAT was increased up to two-fold by hydration for 90 min, while lesser increases were seen with shorter hydration periods.

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