The study was conducted at the Leibniz Research Institute for Environmental Medicine (IUF) in Dusseldorf, Germany and examined 20 healthy women, aged 55 - 68 years. Participants were given 75 mg of Pycnogenol® per day, over a period of 12 weeks. Skin hydration, skin elasticity and skin fatigue were assessed by non-invasive biophysical methods at trial start and after six and 12 weeks. In addition, at the beginning and again after 12 weeks of Pycnogenol® supplementation, each time, a biopsy was obtained to assess gene expression of HAS-1 and COL1A1 and COL1A2. The study found that:
- Pycnogenol® elevated COL1A1 by 29 percent and COL1A2 by 41 percent and increased hyaluronic acid production in skin by 44 percent
- Pycnogenol® enhanced skin elasticity by 25 percent, in addition to skin hydration by eight percent, and was especially noticeable in women who had dry skin from the start, with an increase of 21 percent
- Pycnogenol® decreased skin fatigue considerably
- Pycnogenol® reduced skin wrinkles by three percent and increased skin smoothness by six percent
Study results confirmed Pycnogenol® improved skin at a physiological and molecular level. Pycnogenol® increased hyaluronic acid in women by 44 percent after 12 weeks of supplementation. Hyaluronic acid binds large quantities of water in the skin and in other tissues, such as cartilage. An increased amount of hyaluronic acid explains the increased skin hydration, higher elasticity and overall smoother skin appearance found in women taking Pycnogenol®.
"This exciting and technically advanced investigation with women representing actual consumer profiles greatly supports our efforts for targeting the skin beauty category for both dietary supplements and functional foods," says Victor Ferrari, CEO of Horphag Research, exclusive worldwide suppliers of Pycnogenol®, who welcomes the publication.
According to Ferrari, beauty from within has been a driver in Horphag's business for the last several years, with Asian markets providing numerous Pycnogenol® products in the skincare field. This study joins a sizable and largely expanding portfolio of already established skin research on Pycnogenol®. It confirms previous indications that Pycnogenol® improves human skin conditions, including promoting glowing skin and reducing the appearance of over-pigmentation and skin inflammation, resulting in a more even complexion.