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J Biomed Nanotechnol. 2010 Oct;6(5):432-51.

Designing inorganic light-protective skin nanotechnology products.

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  • 1Optoelectronics and Measurement Techniques Laboratory, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 4500, FI-90014 Oulu, Finland.


In this review, we discuss the use of inorganic nanoparticles, mainly zinc oxide (ZnO) and titanium dioxide (TiO2), for sunscreen applications considering their intrinsic physical properties and the Mie theory. These properties cause, from one side, attenuation of the ultraviolet light by absorption and scattering (dependent on a particle size), which is the purpose sunscreens are designed for, and formation of free radicals (i.e., phototoxicity) during this process--from the other. Particle penetration into skin is also an important issue addressed in this review due to possible adverse effects associated with interaction between nanoparticles and skin living cells.

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