Hyaluronan is a glucosoaminoglycan that is present in the dermis in large quantities and which can bind up to 1000 times its own weight in water. DSM’s senior business development manager for skin care Dr Goede Schueler explained that for this reason it can act as a filler, providing mechanical cushioning for the skin.
As skin ages the levels of hyaluronan drop, leading to reduced skin firmness; but, according to DSM, Syn Glycan can help boost the flagging production of the substance.
In addition, the Switzerland-based company claims the ingredient also increases levels of decorin and lumican, proteins that alter collagen fibres by making them thinner and stronger.
Firmness, tension and tonicity
“The two effects of stronger collagen fibres plus increased hyaluronan levels transform into a skin with better values for firmness, tension and tonicity,” Schueler told CosmeticsDesign.
In vivo trials also lend support to the efficacy of the ingredient, she said.
A formulation containing 2.5 per cent Syn Glycan was tested on 20 female volunteers and its performance was compared to a placebo formulation received by another 20 female volunteers.
Study participants were chosen because they had visible signs of skin sagging on the face and the forearms, and were between the ages of 55 and 65.
According to DSM, after 8 weeks, 84 per cent of the study group experienced an increase in skin firmness of 7 per cent. In addition, Syn Glycan also had a positive effect on tension and tonicity.
The participants also noticed these changes, said the company, reporting an improvement in skin firmness, and softer and more hydrated skin.
According to Schueler, the multitude of applications for the ingredient will ensure a positive response from industry.
“Part of its appeal lies in the versatility of the product, which is suitable for a wide range of cosmetic applications,” he said.
These include firming body creams and anti-cellulite treatments, anti sagging formulations, anti-ageing and anti-wrinkle creams and bust firming products.