Study supports efficacy of hyaluronan for wrinkle reduction

By Stephen Daniells

- Last updated on GMT

© iStock/liza5450
© iStock/liza5450
Twelve weeks of supplementation with hyaluronan – also known as hyaluronic acid – may improve the “luster” of the skin and reduce wrinkles, says a new study from Japan.

Data from a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial with 60 adults indicated that 120 milligrams per day of Kewpie’s hyaluronan ingredients Hyabest (A) and Hyabest (S) LF-P also led to improvements in skin suppleness.

“This study showed that the oral ingestion of the [molecular weight] 2 k or 300 k [hyaluronic acid] for 12 weeks suppresses wrinkles and improves the skin’s luster and suppleness in people aged 59 years or less who were healthy Japanese men and women over 22 years old. From the above, [hyaluronic acid] consumption is expected to be used as a method to maintain healthy skin,”​ wrote researchers from Kewpie Corporation and the Toho University Ohashi Medical Center in Clinical, Cosmetic and Investigational Dermatology.

Kewpie Corp funded the study.

HA and skin

The skin contains about 50% of the body’s hyaluronan (HA), a component present in every connective tissue. Degradation of HA and collagen is reported to be a cause of wrinkles, with many ingredient suppliers exploring the potential of supplementation to improve skin health from within.

Despite the interest in hyaluronan, only a handful of clinical trials investigating the efficacy of oral consumption of HA on skin health parameters are reported in the literature (see PubMed​, accessed Sept. 19, 2017).

Scientists from Kewpie authored a review in 2014, published in the Nutrition Journal,​ which concluded: “The reduction of HA in the skin by intrinsic and extrinsic factors such as aging and ultraviolet radiation, smoking and air pollutants induce dryness in the skin. However, daily HA supplements can moisturize the skin because the metabolites of HA increases the skin moisture content by having an effect on the skin cells. Thus, consuming HA affects skin cell and improves dry skin physiologically.

“This review shows that consuming HA moisturizes the skin and employing HA as a dietary supplement makes the skin healthy. We believe that countries worldwide will benefit from this review and consume HA to alleviate dry skin.”

The new double-blinded, placebo-controlled study adds to this body of evidence and investigated the effects of the ingredient on wrinkles.

Study details

Euromonitor International estimated the value of beauty supplements to be $2.9 billion in 2015, with the US market valued at $76 million. The category is reportedly growing at greater than 10% in the US.

The researchers recruited 60 Japanese men and women aged between 22 and 59 to participate in their study. The participants were randomly assigned to one of three groups: Placebo, or a HA formulation using one of two varieties, with a molecular weight of 2k or 300k (Hyabest (A) and Hyabest (S) LF-P, respectively). Both groups received a dosage of 120 mg per day.

Three-dimensional analysis of their skin indicated that the HA groups showed a better level of the whole sulcus (grooves in the skin) to volume ratio, wrinkle area ratio, and wrinkle volume ratio, compared to placebo and baseline values. However, only the 300 k (Hyabest (S) LF-P) group showed significantly diminished wrinkles compared with the placebo group.

Additional information about luster and suppleness from a questionnaire indicated that both improved in all groups after 12 weeks, compared to baseline values. However, luster in both HA groups increased more than the placebo groups, said the researchers.

“Hyaluronic acid is costly to manufacture, and once in the body, its effectiveness is diminished by absorption in the intestinal tract and metabolic action by the liver, making the slight quantities available in other formulations negligible in their effect,” ​stated Kewpie in a press release. “Hyabest(S)LF-P is less subject to degradation, and few companies possess the technical expertise and facilities to produce hyaluronic acid at the levels that Kewpie Corporation does.”

Source: Clinical, Cosmetic and Investigational Dermatology
Volume 2017:10 Pages 267—273, doi: 10.2147/CCID.S141845
“Oral hyaluronan relieves wrinkles: a double-blinded, placebo-controlled study over a 12-week period”
Authors M. Oe et al.

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