Sunscreens and moisturizers derived from biological sources such as cyanobacteria could represent a safer alternative to current, synthetically produced cosmetics, research published in the European Journal of Phycology suggests.
Using organic matter to develop sunscreens could lessen the risk of adverse side effects, such as contact sensitivity and estrogen mimicking, and help prevent potentially harmful chemicals from entering the environment, lead author Peyman Derikvand of the University of Isfahan, Iran, and colleagues from Swansea and London, say.
The use of biological compounds has many potential advantages for the cosmetics industry, one of which is the organism’s ability to self-renew and reproduce, ensuring that supplies are sustainable. This is especially true for photosynthetic organisms that require only light energy, carbon dioxide and basic nutrients.
One group of such organisms, cyanobacteria, could have great potential as a source of cosmetic products for sunscreens and moisturizers because some of its species live in extremely arid habitats and thus produce compounds that give them the ability to cope with both high UV radiation and extreme desiccation.
These compounds include mycosporine-like amino acids (MAAs) and scytonemin, which provide strong screening protection from longwave and shortwave UV radiation respectively. Such natural photoprotectants could be good candidates as alternatives to synthetic UV filters.
In addition, extracellular polymeric substances (EPS) derived from cyanobacteria appear to be much more effective at retaining moisture than EPS from conventional moisture preserving materials, such as urea, glycerin and propylene glycol, currently used in cosmetics.
Cyanobacteria have higher photosynthetic and growth rates than more complex plants, simple nutritional requirements, and the ability to grow under closed cultivation systems that do not compete with agriculture. However, economic and sustainable production of these bio-compounds at the large scales required by the cosmetic industry is a key challenge.
“As we move into an era where we are turning to nature to replace synthetic chemicals, industry is being driven to look to natural product alternatives. Cyanobacteria, tiny photosynthetic microbes, offer new potential. One suite of compounds are synthesised to protect against damaging ultraviolet and intense sunlight. These compounds, as discussed in this review, offer many advantages over current synthetically derived sunscreens,” said author Carole Llewellyn, Associate Professor in Applied Aquatic Bioscience.
“On-going research into the intensive cultivation of photosynthetic microorganisms in photobioreactors is bringing new understanding in terms of design, operation and scale-up, and will steadily improve both the economics and feasibility of industrial production of cyanobacteria,” said Llewellyn.
Technical improvements coupled to market demand should see the increasing application of cyanobacterial metabolites in the cosmetics sector, the authors conclude.
Learn more: Cyanobacteria: the future of sunscreen?
[osd_subscribe categories=’cyanobacteria’ placeholder=’Email Address’ button_text=’Subscribe Now for any new posts on the topic “CYANOBACTERIA”‘]
Receive an email update when we add a new CYANOBACTERIA article.
The Latest on: Cyanobacteria
[google_news title=”” keyword=”cyanobacteria” num_posts=”10″ blurb_length=”0″ show_thumb=”left”]
via Google News
The Latest on: Cyanobacteria
- Earth's First Stable Dose of Oxygen Nearly Ended All Lifeon February 3, 2023 at 6:00 am
The Great Oxidation Event likely went on for 100 million more years than scientists previously thought and it wasn't so stable after all.
- Cyanobacteria detected in Uruguayan and Argentine resortson February 2, 2023 at 8:13 pm
Uruguayan authorities detected once again the presence of cyanobacteria in the waters of the Queguay river (a tributary to the Uruguay River), east of Guichón, in the department (province) of Paysandú ...
- Don’t Let Your Dog Swim in Green Wateron February 2, 2023 at 8:00 am
If your pup likes to swim and splash in ponds, pay attention if one of your favourite watering holes suddenly looks green or smells funny. This time of year, microscopic creatures called cyanobacteria ...
- Genetic engineering sheds light on ancient evolutionary questionson January 31, 2023 at 1:37 pm
Cyanobacteria are single-celled organisms that derive energy from light, using photosynthesis to convert atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) and liquid water (H2O) into breathable oxygen and the ...
- Algal Bloom In Te Roto O Wairewa-Lake Forsython January 31, 2023 at 3:50 am
Community and Public Health has issued a health warning after potentially toxic blue-green algae (planktonic cyanobacteria) was found in Te Roto o Wairewa-Lake Forsyth People should avoid the lake ...
- Jamey Young: Then and Now / 2012 Early Career Award Winneron January 29, 2023 at 3:59 pm
Engineering professor Jamey Young at Vanderbilt University is developing new strategies for engineering the metabolism of cyanobacteria. He is working to create “green cell factories” for producing ...
- Could we feed a city on Mars? This question is central to the future of space explorationon January 27, 2023 at 1:25 pm
The basis of food systems on Mars would involve water harvested from the soil (rovers have shown that there are small but significant amounts of frozen water in the crust) and cyanobacteria ...
- Opinion: The food systems that will feed Mars are set to transform food on Earthon January 25, 2023 at 10:00 pm
Agricultural technologies to grow food on Mars can help address climate change, sustainability and food scarcity challenges.
- Banaras Hindu University names new cyanobacteria species in honour of Malviyaon January 24, 2023 at 10:25 pm
The study found a new species of cyanobacteria, called Amazonocrinis malviyae, in the Jammu and Kashmir region. The researchers named the new species ...
via Bing News