LycoRed goes under the skin of UV protection complex

By Katie Bird

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Ultraviolet

LycoRed has, for the first time, looked at the effect of its tomato lycopene complex on the histological characteristics of the skin.

The complex is said to protect against UV damage and the Israel-based company has performed a number of studies using erythema (skin redness) as a measure of the ingredient’s efficacy.

However, this is the first time the company has gone under the skin and looked in detail at the effect of Lyc-O-Mato.

Reduced numbers of sunburn cells

According to company taking the supplement reduces the formation of sunburn cells and slows down the depletion of Langerhans cells that are found in the skin.

The morphology of Langerhans cells is altered by UV radiation and this affects the important immune function of the skin, explained Dr Zohar Nir from LycoRed.

Subjects took 10mg of the Lyc-O-Mato complex for ten weeks before their skin was irradiated with UVA and UVB radiation. Nir explained that the long administration period was due to the time it takes for the levels of protection to build up in the body.

Skin samples were taken 24 hours after radiation and the number of sunburn cells (cells that have been damaged by the UV radiation) were counted and compared with patients taking the placebo treatment.

“We checked the skin samples under the microscope and counted how many cells had died under the radiation. In the samples from untreated patients the number of sunburn cells was 6 times higher than the treated group,”​ Nir told

In addition, the UV-induced depletion of Langerhans cells was severely reduced, it is claimed.

Complements topical sunscreen application

According to Nir, the treatment is not a replacement but a complement to the application of more traditional sunscreen products.

The power of the supplement, for Nir, lies in the fact that many individuals only apply sunscreens when they plan to be spending a significant proportion of time outside, say on holiday at the beach.

People aren’t always aware that their skin can be damaged by radiation during their everyday life. In the absence of daily application of sun care products, daily supplementation can help protect individuals from sun damage, he explained.

The Israeli company has filed for international patent protection. Nir explained that the company has applied for a Patent Co-operation Treaty, which enables it to file globally within 18 months.

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