A letter from a customer and fan

At our head office in Vancouver, Canada, the Glissandra team is always thrilled to receive letters, emails, and phone calls from enthusiastic customers – and sometimes their spouse! – who can’t wait to share the incredible experiences they’ve had since they were first introduced to Glissandra. It makes our day and reminds us of how lucky we are to be making a difference in people’s lives.
We don’t like to gloat, but we have some of the best customers and fans around! Take Pino, who splits his time between Vancouver and sunny California. He’s given us permission to share his unedited letter with you, in hopes of helping other people who have similar issues.
I had acute sunburn problems on my scalp for a long time, as I am Bald & enjoy exercising outdoor. I used to put on a lot of sun block, but that did not help with the development of redness with an expanded whitish colored skin, sometimes leading to blisters & scars. My skin was so delicate that only a light touch would generate a blister. Also my scalp had developed scalings.
Since using the Glissandra serum, my scalp has much improved. To ensure I have maximum protection I always put on an extra layer of serum just before doing sports under the sun (particularly in California where I spend quite a bit of time). I do not have blister problems anymore, and the scarred tissues are healed; even the pigmentation has improved greatly.
Thank you for sharing your story with us, Pino. We appreciate your support!

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


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


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.