The study, published in Skin Pharmacology and Physiology, is said to be the first clinical trial to demonstrate the efficacy of collagen hydrolysate (Verisol) at a low dosage (2.5 g/day) on skin physiology.
“The results clearly revealed that both dosages (2.5 and 5.0 g) of the specific collagen hydrolysate had a beneficial effect on skin physiology, as indicated by increased skin elasticity after 4 weeks of daily consumption,” wrote researchers from the University of Kiel (Germany), the Collagen Research Institute (Kiel, Germany), Skin Investigation and Technology (Hamburg, Germany), and the University of São Paulo (Brazil).
“In contrast to most topically applied substances this positive effect of orally applied collagen hydrolysate on skin health seems to be long-lasting, especially in women over 50 years of age.
“Overall collagen hydrolysate intake over a longer period seems to have a positive impact on skin health. It has to be stated that the demonstrated efficacy refers to the specific collagen peptide composition (Verisol) used in this study and could not be extrapolated to collagen hydrolysate in general.”
High level scientific substantiation
Commenting on the results, Tonja Lipp, Sr. Manager Business Development - Health & Nutrition, Gelita, told NutraIngredients-USA that the company is “excited” to see the publication of this data, which supports the beauty claims for the company’s Verisol bioactive collagen peptides ingredient.
“It is rare to have effects on skin improvement substantiated by this level of scientific research,” she added.
“Bioactive collagen peptides impact the deeper layers of the skin - the dermis - and, as dermal collagen loss is a major factor of skin aging, the benefits have been more pronounced for women aged 50 or older. These beauty from within benefits can be achieved in a natural way by consuming a 2.5 g daily dose of Verisol, which can be conveniently incorporated into daily lifestyle.
“Consumers now have a healthy and natural addition to traditional topical skin applications,” said Lipp.
Led by Prof Ehrhardt Proksch, MD, PhD, the researchers recruited 69 women aged between 35 and 55 to participate in their double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. The women were randomly were randomly assigned to receive 2.5 g or 5.0 g of Verisol or placebo once daily for eight weeks.
The results showed that skin elasticity, which was the primary endpoint, was improved after four and eight weeks in both collagen hydrolysate groups, compared with placebo, with no statistically significant differences between the collagen groups.
Further analysis revealed that the effects of the collagen supplement skin elasticity were more pronounced in women aged over 50.
“The fact that this positive effect was still detectable at the end of the 4-week washout phase suggests a long-lasting dermal physiological effect,” wrote the researchers. “These findings are in contrast to topical products which should be mostly effective in the skin ageing-encountered superficial dermis and epidermis, where improved skin elasticity is predominantly caused by an increase in epidermal hydration.”
On the other hand, no statistically significant effects were observed for skin moisture and skin evaporation, although a “positive influence” was observed for skin moisture (improvements of 11 to 14%) and skin evaporation (improvements of 6 to 7%) in women over 50.
Prof Proksch and his co-workers noted that experimental studies with human collagen-producing skin cells (fibroblasts) have shown that the Verisol collagen product may stimulate the expression of skin extracellular matrix macromolecules.
“After supplementation of the collagen peptides to fibroblast cultures a pronounced increase of type I collagen expression as well as in the expression of proteoglycans like biglycan, decorin and versican could be observed,” they explained.
“Although further investigations are needed, it could be speculated that the observed positive effect of collagen hydrolysates on skin elasticity might be caused by an increase of dermal matrix macromolecule biosynthesis.”
While the study used the Gelita ingredient, Prof Proksch confirmed that their research is independent.
“A follow up study is accepted for publication and will appear soon,” he added.
Source: Skin Pharmacology and Physiology
Volume 27, Pages 47-55, doi: 10.1159/000351376
“Oral Supplementation of Specific Collagen Peptides Has Beneficial Effects on Human Skin Physiology: A Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study”
Authors: E. Proksch, D. Segger, J. Degwert, M. Schunck, V. Zague, S. Oesser