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High spatial resolution study of human skin using synchrotron infrared microscopy: application to the penetration of external agents

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Human skin sections were studied using synchrotron-powered infrared microscopy. The superior lateral resolution achieved with this technique (diffraction-limited spot sizes) allows the detailed analysis of the biocomposition of the skin layers. It is shown that highly organized lipids are present in the stratum corneum, as evidenced by a slight frequency difference in the symmetric stretch mode of the methylene groups. Biochemical images were generated showing the precise location of the lipids, proteins and collagen across the skin section. More enhanced images were generated using a statistical approach (fuzzy C-means clustering). Penetration of two external agents (cyanophenol and a cosmetic compound, ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate) was studied. The penetration pathway across the stratum corneum is favored at locations of lower lipid concentration. Both compounds penetrated into the epidermis, but neither of them induced a change in the protein secondary structure. It was shown that hair follicle is a favored penetration pathway for these agents.
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Document Type: Abstract

Affiliations: 1: LURE, Centre universitaire Paris Sud, BP 34, 91898 Orsay, France 2: Laboratoire de Biologie Végétale Yves Rocher, 101, Quai du Président Roosevelt, 92444 Issy les Moulineaux Cedex, France 3: YSL Beauté, 20-26, Boulevard du Parc, 92521 Neuilly sur Seine Cedex, France 4: Sanofi-Synthélabo Recherche, Avenue Professeur Blayac, 34184 Montpellier Cedex 04, France

Publication date: December 1, 2004

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