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Essential Glucosamine Complex: Redefining Skin Aging

The study of skin aging has evolved and moved beyond lines and wrinkles to address an important new area: the impact of skin tone on appearance. By combining the best of skin imaging technology and a new understanding of the biology behind a "youthful glow," P&G Beauty scientists have developed a breakthrough glucosamine complex designed to penetrate up to 10 surface layers deep to improve the appearance of uneven skin tone caused by an overproduction of melanin from UV radiation. In addition to reducing discolorations and brown spots, this formulation also reduces the appearance of fine lines.

Improvement seen in pigmentation during a glucosamine complex clinical trial

Extensive clinical trials were conducted to test a glucosamine complex that improves skin tone damage caused by UV radiation. This image was taken at baseline and the image on the right represents the improvement seen in pigmentation in the circled area at eight weeks. 

This advancement is important to consumers, evidenced by a global surge in the number of women looking for non-prescription ways to mitigate or fix uneven skin tone. Importantly, scientists at P&G Beauty have conducted several clinical trials involving hundreds of women utilizing the glucosamine complex to ensure the formulation can deliver results that consumers want. Nineteen internationally renowned dermatologists from around the world met in Rome in January 2006 to review these data, and determined that the glucosamine complex significantly reduces both the amount and unevenness of melanin in the skin versus a base moisturizer.

Creating the Glucosamine Complex

Understanding the unique changes that skin pigment cells undergo when exposed to UV was critical in the development of the glucosamine complex, which targets cells that overproduce melanin. Additionally, P&G Beauty scientists considered the fact that healthy skin reflects light, but skin that lacks collagen and moisture absorbs light - giving it a dull appearance. To combat these skin tone issues, the glucosamine complex includes:

  • Niacinamide: This potent B vitamin improves the skin's condition by strengthening the moisture barrier and helping promote homogenous collagen - both of which help to smooth the skin's texture and increase its reflectivity. It has been shown that niacinamide has an inhibitory effect on the transfer of melanin-containing melanosomes into keratinocytes having the potential to reduce pigmented spots.
  • N-acetyl glucosamine: N-acetyl glucosamine interrupts the dysfunctional cycle of melanin overproduction in pigment-producing cells by blocking the conversion of tyrosinase, a key enzyme in melanin biosynthesis, to its active form. In combination, N-acetyl glucosamine and niacinamide work synergistically to reduce the appearance of hyperpigmented brown spots and improve the overall evenness of skin tone.

Clinical Trials Show Tone Improvement

At the 2006 American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) meeting, P&G Beauty scientists presented data from three clinical studies that found N-acetyl glucosamine and niacinamide reduce melanin unevenness and the appearance of hyperpigmentation in UV damaged skin cells. This combination was also effective on top of any result provided by SPF 15 sunscreen.

In Vitro Testing Shows Barrier Improvement, Collagen Growth

Also at the 2006 AAD, P&G Beauty presented data from a study of in vitro human skin cultures that showed N-acetyl glucosamine and niacinamide act to stimulate hyaluronan synthesis, a key component in skin's hydration, as well as increasing collagen production.

Consumers get more radiant skin

In order to assess how consumers felt about their appearance following the use of various products containing the glucosamine complex, P&G Beauty scientists conducted a blind study of nearly 200 women who tried them. Eighty-seven percent of women surveyed found the products were effective at making their skin more radiant and luminous, and 77 percent said the products made their skin's color and tone more even.

"Pigmentation is an appearance issue that many women encounter. The large base clinical data indicate that the combination of N-acetyl glucosamine and niacinamide significantly evens skin tone, reduces the appearance of age spots, increases hydration and provides an easily accessible solution to ease women's concern about aging," says Dr. Rosemarie Osborne, Principal Scientist, P&G Beauty.

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