五月是皮膚癌關注月!

皮膚癌是美國最普遍的癌症啊,你知道嗎?每年單單是在美國,便有超過 350 萬宗確診皮膚癌個案。據現時統計所指,每 5 名美國人之中便有 1 位會患上皮膚癌。

Glissandra 花了超過 20 年時間,致力硏究及發展我們的先進抗衰老產品。這段時間以來,肌膚的健康一直是我們優先重視的。五味子乙素這一天然複合物,就是我們主要成份的基礎。科學證明,它能幫助保護皮膚細胞免受有害紫外線的傷害。請按此處了解更多關於五味子乙素。

及早發現患上皮膚癌是提高存活率的關鍵。而教育對於幫助我們發現和治療還是在可治癒狀態下的皮膚癌這一點之上,實在非常重要。這正是我們想與大家分享一些關於皮膚癌的關鍵事實的原因,使我們可以共同對抗這致命疾病。

皮膚癌是什麼?

皮膚癌是皮膚細胞出現不正常生長。

皮膚癌可以分為兩類:黑色素瘤及非黑色素瘤。黑色素瘤便是最致命的一類。另外,你可能也聽説過基底細胞癌及鱗狀細胞癌,它們則是最普遍的非黑色素瘤。

是什麼引致皮膚癌?

當皮膚細胞的DNA損壞而身體未能把損壞修復好的話,就是皮膚癌了。暴露於太陽光下是皮膚癌的首要原因。不幸的是,如果你有皮膚癌的家族病史,你自行發病的好能性會比較高,但你仍然能以一些簡單的選擇來保護自己。

怎樣才能好好保護皮膚?

  • 避免使用日曬床 任何人都沒有正當理由把自己暴露於這樣的危險之中。 若你要堅持擁有古銅膚色,建議使用有害性較小的替代品,例如免曬類美黑產品或美黑噴霧。 (請務必遵照指示使用,因為這些產品也有自己的風險。) 最佳選擇當然應該是你與生俱來的自然肌膚!
  • 避開太陽最猛烈的時間 (上午10時至下午4時) — 如果你必須留在戶外,請算擇陰涼之處。
  • 選擇能保護你皮膚、頭髮及眼睛的裝束 長袖衫,長褲,闊邊帽和太陽鏡在保護你的同時也能讓你變得更時髦。
  • 使用耐水性的防曬品 能有效阻擋紫外線 UVA 和 UVB。 請緊記在曬太陽前至少 20 分鐘塗抹,而且隨後每 2 小時也要再重新塗抹。即使是陰天也須要防曬的!
  • 諮詢你的醫生或藥劑師 你服用中的藥物有可能使你的皮膚更容易受到陽光的傷害。

如何檢查自己的皮膚?

由於損傷是發生在皮膚表面上,所以一般在早期階段已能被發現。定期進行自我檢查是非常重要的。

一個簡單的方法是利用「黑色素瘤的 ABCDE」來記下要尋找什麼:

  • A: Asymmetry 不對稱
  • B: Border 邊緣
  • C: Colour 顔色
  • D: Diameter 直徑
  • E: Evolving 變化

如果你注意到你的痣或色素斑展示出以上的一個或多個跡象,請即聯絡你的皮膚科醫生。即使結果是虛驚一場也不用覺得不好意思。以防萬一的心態可能正好保住了你的性命。

了解更多

美國皮膚科醫學會最近發起了一項新的公眾認識倡議。其 SPOT 皮膚癌運動的口號「預防!檢查!活著!」鼓勵人們積極的照顧自己皮膚健康。我們鼓勵所有會員和朋友瀏覽美國皮膚科醫學會網頁去了解更多關於皮膚的知識。

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Glutathione: The Experts Weigh In

In a recent post, we learned that Schisandrin B stimulates the production of glutathione (GSH), the body’s most potent natural antioxidant. Using anti-aging skincare products that contain Schisandrin B will effectively and drastically reduce the unsightly physical manifestations of skin aging, such as wrinkles, age spots, droopy eyelids, and sagging neck skin.

Like no man is an island, no organ of the body functions entirely independently of the others. Our cells work in harmony to create and sustain life. Though we have discussed the importance of glutathione in skin health, it is important to consider the wider-ranging implications of glutathione for our overall well-being.

Expert opinions

Here’s what some of the experts are saying about the role of glutathione in health:

“No other antioxidant is as important to overall health as glutathione. It is the regenerator of immune cells and the most valuable detoxifying agent in the body. Low levels are associated with early aging and even death.”

– Lorna R. Vanderhaeghe and Patrick J.D. Bouic, Ph.D., The Immune System Cure

“Raised glutathione levels fight the oxidation of circulating fats in the bloodstream, including cholesterol, retarding the process of plaque formation in the arteries – the underlying cause for most heart disease and stroke.”

– Nutrition Reviews 54: 1-30, 1996

“It is well known that aging is accompanied by a precipitous fall in GSH levels. Lower GSH levels are implicated in many diseases associated with aging, including cataracts, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s, atherosclerosis and others.”

– Journal of Clinical Epidemiology 47: 1021-26, 1994

The future of healthy aging

Scientists around the world have been pursuing progressively more advanced research on glutathione and Schisandrin B. We may not be able to stop the clock, but what we already know about these compounds demonstrates their significance in the campaign for healthy aging, starting with the body’s largest organ: our skin.

References

Quirin, Dr. K. W. et al. Supercritical Schisandra Extracts – a New Concept for Personal Care Cosmetics. Cosmetic Science Technology, 2008.

Gutman, Dr. Jimmy. GSH Your Body’s Most Powerful Protector GLUTATHIONE. Montreal: Kudo.ca Communications, 2002. Print.

Somersall, Dr. Allan C. and Dr. Gustavo Bounous. Breakthrough in Cell-Defense. USA: GOLDENeight Publishing, 1999. Print.

Vanderhaeghe, Lorna R. and Patrick J.D. Bouic, Ph.D. The Immune System Cure. New York: Kensington, 2002. Print.

Glissandrin: A superior antioxidant

In the October 2011 issue of InStyle, we learned what skin experts are prescribing to combat a number of common ailments. The first in the series shares tips on protecting skin from the elements. And while Miami dermatologist Leslie Baumann recommends using antioxidants, there’s more to the story than what’s known by even the savviest experts and consumers.

Most antioxidants are free radical scavengers, but some are so large that they cannot penetrate skin cells. This presents a problem since the source of the issue lies within the cell walls.

Fortunately, some antioxidants are not only able to penetrate skin cells but also to up-regulate the antioxidant defense systems inherent in our body. In simpler terms, that means they actually enhance the body’s natural ability to combat free radicals.

Our skin is equipped with antioxidant defense systems to fight free radicals caused by harmful stimuli. One such stimulus is solar light radiation. Long-term exposure or over-exposure to the sun can overwhelm these antioxidant systems, resulting in damage to the skin cells and the depletion of essential components such as collagen and elastin.

The consequence is photoaging, chronic alterations in the skin’s structure that become visible on the surface. Many of us are all too familiar with the signs of photoaging, which include wrinkles, brown spots, inelasticity, coarse skin texture, and uneven pigmentation.

Glissandrin™, with Schisandrin B as its key compound, has been proven to enhance the antioxidant defense systems naturally found in our skin. This is in addition to its ability to scavenge free radicals. Readily absorbed by the skin, Glissandrin is a superior antioxidant.

Glissandrin is a natural ingredient derived from Schisandra berry. Researchers at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, led by Dr. Robert Ko, recently published a paper in the respected medical journal, Fitoterapia (2011), on the protective properties of Schisandrin B in preventing and restoring skin damage from solar radiation.

To learn more, please visit http://glissandra.com.

Schisandrin B: Ushering in a New Era in UV Protective Skincare

Introduction

Schisandrin B, a key component of Glissandrin, can protect against solar irradiation-induced oxidative injury in skin tissue and skin cells, according to recent research findings from the laboratory of Dr. Robert Ko at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology.

As the largest organ in the human body, the skin serves as an effective barrier for protecting against various external threats. This includes exposure to harmful solar irradiation – particularly UV and infrared rays – which research has shown to be a major cause of skin aging. Solar irradiation-induced reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation is responsible for photo-aging, the signs of which include wrinkles, coarse skin texture, and reduced skin resilience. Although human skin tissue possesses non-enzymatic and enzymatic antioxidant defense systems to cope with the increased oxidative stress caused by solar light radiation, long-term exposure or over-exposure to solar light can overwhelm the antioxidant system.

But what if there was a way to enhance the skin’s natural antioxidant defenses to prevent photo-aging entirely? Schisandrin B (Sch B) is able to do just that, ushering in a new era in UV protective skincare.

Schisandrin B is derived from the Schisandra fruit, an herb commonly used in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). This naturally occurring herbal ingredient has been found to produce tissue non-specific protection against oxidative injury by enhancing cellular and mitochondrial glutathione antioxidant status in the heart, liver, kidney, and brain.

Figure 1: Schisandra berry

Recent studies led by Dr. Robert Ko at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology have shown the promise of Schisandrin B:

• Schisandrin B stimulated both reduced-glutathione and vitamin E levels. These two non-enzymatic antioxidants can remove excess ROS during oxidative stress in a synergistic manner.
• Schisandrin B elevated various enzymes involved in the enzymatic antioxidant defense system, demonstrating that non-enzymatic and enzymatic antioxidant components work together to protect against solar irradiation-induced oxidative injury in skin tissue.

Figure 2: Effects of Sch B pretreatment on solar irradiation-induced cell injury in BJ human fibroblasts

• Schisandrin B suppressed the solar irradiation-induced increases in elastases-type protease activity and matrix-metalloproteinases-1 (MMP-1) expression in skin cells. The degradation of the extracellular matrix (EM) in skin tissue as a result of solar irradiation is of prime concern in skincare. This is one of the major biological events that leads to photo-aging and is mediated by protein-degrading enzymes like elastases-type protease and MMP-1.

Figure 3: Effects of Sch B pretreatment on cellular elastases-type protease activity in solar-irradiated BJ human fibroblasts

Figure 4: Effects of Sch B pretreatment on cellular MMP-1 level in solar-irradiated BJ human fibroblasts

Schisandrin B is a key component of Glissandrin™, a potent anti-aging skincare ingredient that has been the subject of over 100 research papers. In-vivo and in-vitro studies have proven the ability of Glissandrin to reverse mitochondrial decay , the leading cause of aging, and to simultaneously enhance the cell’s natural ability to fight oxidative damage.

Other studies have shown the ability of Schisandrin B to suppress collagenase, an enzyme responsible for the depletion of collagen in skin cells. Research has also been conducted on the compound’s anti-cancer properties, particularly in the skin.

Figure 5: Mitochondria

Conclusion

Given that both spectra of solar light – UV and infrared radiation – are major causes of skin aging, Schisandrin B’s ability to enhance the skin’s antioxidant defenses against harmful solar irradiation, thereby offering the prospect of preventing skin photo-aging, is instigating a new era in skincare.

For more information

More information on Schisandrin B, mitochondrial decay, and theories of aging can be found at these independent websites:

• National Institutes of Health (http://www.nih.gov/)
• PubMed (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/)
• Natural Standard (http://www.naturalstandard.com/)

Background and References

Schisandrin B is a key component of Glissandrin™, the proprietary ingredient in Glissandra™ products.

Dr. Robert Ko holds a PhD from the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada. He is currently a Professor in the Division of Life Science at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, and Chief Technology Officer of Glissandra Skincare Inc.

The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology is ranked 41st among research universities worldwide by Times Higher Education 2010 (London, UK).

Lam PY, Leong PK, Chen N, Ko KM: Schisandrin B enhances the glutathione redox cycling and protects against oxidant injury in different types of cultured cells. Biofactors (in press).

Chiu, P.Y., and Ko, K.M. (2006). Schisandrin B-induced increase in cellular glutathione level and protection against oxidant injury are mediated by the enhancement of glutathione synthesis and regeneration in AML12 and H9c2 cells. Biofactors 26: 221-230.

Chiu, P.Y., Leung, H.Y., and Ko, K.M. (2008). Schisandrin B enhances renal mitochondrial antioxidant status, functional and structural integrity, and protects against gentamicin-induced nephrotoxicity in rats. Biol. Pharm. Bull. 31: 602-605.

Chen, N., Chiu, P.Y., and Ko, K.M. (2008). Schisandrin B enhances cerebral mitochondrial antioxidant status and structural integrity, and protects against cerebral ischemia/reperfusion injury in rats. Biol. Pharm. Bull. 31: 1387-1391.

Lam PY, Yan CW, Chiu PY, Leung HY, Ko KM. Schisandrin B protects against solar irradiation-induced oxidative stress in rat skin tissue. Fitoterapia 2011; 82: 393-400.

Chiu PY, PY Lam, Yan CW, Ko KM. Schisandrin B protects against solar irradiation-induced oxidative injury in BJ human fibroblasts. Fitoterapia 2011; 82: 682-691.

Nisida H, Tatewaki N, Magara T, Nakajima Y, Ko KM, Hamamori Y, Konishi T: Inhibition of ATR kinase activity by schisandrin B in DNA damage response. Nucleic Acid Res. 2009; 37: 5678-5689.

What have scientists found to fight the leading cause of skin aging – mitochondrial decay?

Introduction

This is Part 2 of a 3-part series on the quest by scientists to find effective ways to fight skin aging. In our previous article, entitled “What causes skin aging: Making sense of the latest research findings”, we discussed how oxidative damage is regarded in the scientific community as the primary cause of aging, and how mitochondria play a significant role in this by being a major source of free radicals.

Now, scientists have made a breakthrough in fighting the leading cause of skin aging: Schisandrins have been proven to effectively reverse mitochondrial decay.

A recap of our previous discussion

Mitochondrial decay in aging refers to a progressive disruption to mitochondrial structural integrity and functional ability over time. Consequently, cells experience impaired energy production, a decline in normal function, and accelerated free radical generation. This is the phenomenon of cellular aging, which makes the cell more prone to apoptosis, or programmed cell death – much like cell suicide.

Figure 1: Structure of a mitochondrion

Skin aging – the signs of which are commonly manifested in wrinkles, fine lines, age spots, loss of suppleness, and deterioration of skin tone – has been proven to involve mitochondrial dysfunction.

The mitochondria–free radical connection

Research has shown that mitochondria are a major source of free radicals. Deteriorating mitochondria instigate a vicious cycle of exacerbated oxidative stress. Consistent with these findings is the concept that “manipulating the signaling pathways that regulate cellular antioxidant defense” and “controlling the intracellular levels of free radicals” is preferred over “altering individual antioxidant components by extrinsic supplementation”.

In simpler terms, this means that it may be more effective to combat aging by treating the source of free radical production rather than by “cleaning up” free radicals after they are generated. This theory is supported by recent studies that have found that scavenging free radicals through the supplementation of certain antioxidants could be ineffective or even harmful in the long run.[i] [ii]

The role of Schisandrin B in skin-related mitochondrial decay

There has been a substantial amount of research on remedies to combat mitochondrial decay as an effective means of mitigating the aging process. Particularly noteworthy is the research conducted by Dr. Bruce Ames (UC Berkeley) and Dr. Tory Hagen (Oregon State University), who investigated the effects of acetyl-L-carnitine and alpha-lipoic acid on improving the functional capability of mitochondria.

Over the past few decades, the pharmacological activities of Schisandrin B, an active ingredient isolated from Fructus Schisandrae (commonly known as the Schisandra berry), have been studied extensively. Research conducted at RK-Lab at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology have demonstrated the protective effect of Schisandrin B on free radical-induced damage in various vital organs, including the heart, liver, kidney, and brain.

Figure 2: Fresh Schisandra berries

Research has shown that Schisandrin B is able to simultaneously:

  1. enhance mitochondrial functional ability, and
  2. increase natural mitochondrial antioxidant capacity.

These are clear indications that this natural compound is effective in mitigating further mitochondrial decay, successfully defeating this leading cause of skin aging.

In addition, Schisandrin B has been proven to be able to induce the expression of heat shock proteins, endogenous protein molecules essential in cellular protection against various stressful stimuli. The expression of heat shock proteins is believed by many in the scientific community to be another crucial biochemical mechanism for fighting aging.

The latest research

Recent research has found a stereoisomer of Schisandrin B, (−)Schisandrin B, to be even more potent in enhancing mitochondrial functional ability and in boosting the innate antioxidant capacity of mitochondria.

Figure 3: Comparison of a cell treated with (−)Schisandrin B vs. a cell with no treatment

(−)Schisandrin B protects cells against oxidative stress, thereby preventing disease and enabling a healthier and longer lifespan.  Without (−)Schisandrin B, cells are vulnerable to oxidative stress. This results in the loss of structural and functional integrity and cyto c release, and ultimately leads to cell death.

Implications for anti-aging skincare

The pharmacological properties of Schisandrin B and (−)Schisandrin B have significant implications for anti-aging skincare, since skin is the largest organ of the human body, and oxidative damage has been recognized as one of the major factors that contribute to skin aging. Wrinkles, fine line, age spots, sagginess, loss of radiance, and many other signs of skin aging are all attributed to oxidative damage.

Studies at RK-Lab at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology[iii] have validated the beneficial effects of Schisandrin B and (−)Schisandrin B on skin cells and skin tissues. Furthermore, topical formulations using Schisandrin B and (−)Schisandrin B have been clinically tested on human subjects with remarkable anti-aging results.

Schisandrin B and (−)Schisandrin B are the key compounds in Glissandrin™, an active ingredient in anti-aging skincare consisting of natural compounds extracted from the Schisandra berry. This active ingredient has been incorporated into the most advanced anti-aging skincare products, now available from Glissandra™ Skincare Inc.

As the first active ingredient to holistically:

  1. address mitochondrial decay,
  2. increase natural cellular antioxidant capability, and
  3. target other causes of aging,

Glissandrin™ is a breakthrough in the anti-aging skincare industry.

To be continued…

In the next article, the powerful anti-aging properties of Glissandrin™ will be explored in further detail.

For more information

More information on Schisandrin B, (−)Schisandrin B, mitochondrial decay, and theories of aging can be found at these independent websites:


[i] Mortality in Randomized Trials of Antioxidant Supplements for Primary and Secondary Prevention – Systematic Review and Meta-analysis, Bjelakovic et al; Journal of the American Medical Association 2007; 297(8):842-857 (doi:10.1001/jama.297.8.842).

[ii] Vitamins in Aging, Health, and Longevity, David R Thomas; The Division of Geriatric Medicine, Saint Louis University Health Sciences Center, Saint Louis, MO, USA.

[iii] The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology was ranked 35th among research universities worldwide by Times Higher Education in 2009.