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Int J Cosmet Sci. 2006 Aug;28(4):277-87. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-2494.2006.00333.x.

Induction of the skin endogenous protective mitochondrial MnSOD by Vitreoscilla filiformis extract.

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L'OREAL Recherche, Clichy, France.


Vitreoscilla filiformis (Vf), a filamentous bacteria living in fresh water is thought to contribute to the observed beneficial effects of Spa water on skin. An active fraction obtained from a Vf biomass was evaluated for its ability to modulate mRNA expression in cultured skin cells. cDNA array analysis was conducted first using a customized membrane including 1176 selected and fully identified genes involved in skin physiology and homeostasis then the newly developed full genome U133 plus 2.0 GeneChip from Affymetrix. The mitochondrial protective manganese superoxide dismutase (MnSOD/SOD-2) was identified as a preferentially induced mRNA target in both normal human dermal fibroblasts and keratinocytes. Induction at the transcriptional level in both cell types was confirmed using quantitative real time/polymerase chain reaction and a kinetic analysis revealed a maximal increase in mRNA expression 20 h after stimulation with Vf extract (Vfe). Using immunofluorescent (fluorescent cell sorter) analysis, an induction of MnSOD protein in both normal human dermal skin fibroblasts (x1.6; P < 0.01) and epidermal keratinocytes (x1.4; P < 0.01) was confirmed. As MnSOD is a major inducible free-radical scavenger in skin, these results suggest that the Vfe could induce skin cells to produce their own endogenous protective defences in vivo against both exogenous environmental stressors such as UV irradiation or microflora as well as to combat endogenous sources of deleterious free radicals involved in skin ageing. Finally, in order to confirm the in vivo potential of this original extract in human, we evaluated its protective activity vs. placebo on the generation of sunburn cells in epidermis under UVB stress. As expected from in vitro profiling, Vfe was indeed found to significantly inhibit the appearance of sunburn cells in UVB-exposed areas, a signature of skin alteration which has been suggested to be linked to a defect in MnSOD protective activity. Altogether, those data suggest that the combination of a suitable protective UV filter together with this bioactive Vfe might improve skin protection through complementary pathways.

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