• solar simulated radiation;
  • photoaging;
  • epidermal and dermal damages;
  • daily photoprotection

Background: There is overwhelming evidence that exposure of human skin to ultraviolet radiations (UVR) leads to the development of cutaneous photoaging and eventually to neoplasia. This study was designed to evaluate in humans the protection afforded by a daily use cream containing a photostable combination of UVB and UVA absorbers (Uvinul® N539, Parsol® 1789 and Mexoryl® SX) providing a continuous absorption through the entire UV spectrum, against damages induced by repeated daily exposure to solar simulated radiation (SSR).

Methods: Buttock skin of 12 healthy volunteers was exposed 5 days per week for 6 weeks to one minimal erythema dose of solar simulated radiation per exposure. The following parameters in treated and untreated skin were evaluated: erythema, pigmentation, skin hydration, skin microtopography, histology and immunochemistry, and collagen and metalloproteinase (MMP) mRNA levels.

Results: In SSR exposed unprotected skin sites, we observed melanization and changes in the skin hydration and microtopography. The epidermis revealed a significant increase in stratum corneum and stratum granulosum thickness. In the dermis, an enhanced expression of tenascin and a reduced expression of type I pro-collagen were evidenced just below the dermal epidermal junction. Although we were unable to visualize any change in elastic fibers in exposed buttock skin, a slightly increased deposition of lysozyme and alpha 1 antitrypsin on these fibers was observed using immunofluorescence techniques. Furthermore, types I and III collagen mRNA were slightly increased and a significant enhancement (up to 2.8-fold) of MMP-2 mRNA level was observed. The daily use cream was shown to prevent all these biological changes.

Conclusion: Our results show in vivo that an appropriate full-UV spectrum product significantly reduces the solar-UV-induced skin damage, demonstrating the benefit of daily photoprotection.