Biomimetic proopiomelanocortin suppresses capsaicin-induced sensory irritation in humans

Sayed Ali Fatemi, Abbas Jafarian-Dehkordi, Valiollah Hajhashemi, Ali Asilian-Mahabadi


Sensitive skin is a frequently mentioned cosmetic complaint. Addition of a biomimetic of neuromediator has recently appeared as a promising new way to cure skin care product problems. This study was aimed to assess the inhibitory effect of a biomimetic lipopeptide derived from proopiomelanocortin (bPOMC) on capsaicin-induced sensory irritation in human volunteers and also to compare its protective effect with that of the well-known anti irritant strontium chloride. The effect of each test compound was studied on 28 selected healthy volunteers with sensitive skin in accordance with a double-blind vehicle-controlled protocol. From day 1 to day 13 each group was applied the test compound (bPOMC or strontium chloride) to one wing of the nose and the corresponding placebo (vehicle) to the other side twice daily. On days 0 and 14, acute skin irritation was induced by capsaicin solution and quantified using clinical stinging test assessments. Following the application of capsaicin solution, sensory irritation was evaluated using a 4-point numeric scale. The sensations perceived before and after treatment (on days 0 and 14) was calculated for the two zones (test materials and vehicle). Ultimately the percentage of variation between each sample and the placebo and also the inhibitory effect of bPOMC compared to that of strontium chloride were reported. Clinical results showed that after two weeks treatment, the levels of skin comfort reported in the group treated with bPOMC were significantly higher than those obtained in the placebo group and the inhibitory effect of bPOMC was about 47% higher than that of strontium chloride. The results of the present study support the hypothesis that biomimetic peptides may be effective on sensitive skin.


Sensitive skin; Anti irritation; Contact dermatitis; Proopiomelanocortin; Biomimetic peptides; Neurocosmetics

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