Dermatologic Antioxidant Therapy may be Warranted to Prevent Ultraviolet Induced Skin Damage

  • Jürgen Fuchs
  • Margaret Huflejt
  • Laurie Rothfuss
  • David Wilson
  • Gerardo Carcamo
  • Lester Packer
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 264)


Experimental and clinical evidence is increasing that free radical processes are implicated in various pathological conditions in skin, such as ultraviolet and ionizing irradiation damage, thermal trauma, phototoxicity and photoallergy, drug toxicity, skin aging, skin autoimmune disease and tumor promotion. Direct evidence for ultraviolet induced free radical formation in skin has been obtained by low temperature electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy (Norrins 1962, Pathak 1968). It was suggested that there is no direct evidence relating formation of reactive oxygen species with acute or chronic ultraviolet effects (Epstein 1977). However, a considerable body of circumstantial evidence has been ammassed that strongly inferes that reactive oxygen species or reactions initiated by them are responsible for at least some of the deleterious effects of ultraviolet upon skin (Black 1987). Exposure of human and animal skin to UVB (280–320 nm) and UVA (320–400 nm) irradiation results in a significant elevation of lipid peroxidation products. Lipid peroxides are toxic in mammalian skin; epidermal damage due to epicutaneous application of lipid peroxides could be mediated by propagation of lipid peroxidation in situ. Injection of an aqueous extract of ultraviolet irradiated linoleic acid into skin induces necrosis of the epidermis and dermis followed by inflammatory response and disruption of collagen and elastic fibres (Waravdekar 1965).


Electron Spin Resonance Free Radical Scavenge Activity Hairless Mouse Sunburn Cell Skin Excisates 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jürgen Fuchs
    • 1
  • Margaret Huflejt
    • 2
  • Laurie Rothfuss
    • 2
  • David Wilson
    • 2
  • Gerardo Carcamo
    • 2
  • Lester Packer
    • 2
  1. 1.Zentrum der Dermatologie und Venerologie, Abteilung II, Klinikum der J.W.Goethe Universität FrankfurtGermany
  2. 2.Department of PhysiologyUniversity of California BerkeleyUSA

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