Usage Areas of Biotechnological Active Substances in the Cosmetics Industry

hyperpigmentation treatment
writer Zeynep Aktas

In our previous articles, the most used in cosmetics from biotechnological materials we talked about. In this last part of our article series, we will talk about the usage areas of these substances.

Anti-aging biotechnological active ingredients

skin aging; It is a complex biological process caused by intrinsic and extrinsic or their combination.
Due to both intrinsic (time-dependent) and extrinsic (time-independent) aging, the skin dries out by losing its moisture, and the connective tissue proteins in the skin decrease due to hormonal reasons in advanced ages [1].

Intrinsic factors; genetics, cell metabolism, hormones and metabolic events, while extrinsic factors; It includes continuous exposure to light, pollution, radiation, chemicals, and toxins [2].

According to their functions or effects, we can divide the anti-aging active ingredients into three main categories. These are moisturizers, antioxidants and extracellular matrix promoters [2].

In order to remove and delay the signs of aging, first of all, daily skin care and the right sunscreen products should be used. Used cosmetic products are followed by antioxidant and/or cell-regulating topical active/medical substances. At the same time, antioxidants can be used in some cosmetic formulations for systemic effect. Invasive methods such as chemical peeling, visible light therapy, intense light pulse (IPL-Intense Pulsed Light), laser applications, radiofrequency applications, skin injections, protection from dynamic wrinkles, correcting static and anatomical wrinkles and regulating the fat tissue ratio in the skin can also be added to the use of cosmetic products. It is widely used [1].

It has been proven in various studies that growth factors, soy peptides and laminin have anti-aging effects, and that polypeptides can increase collagen synthesis and activate dermal metabolism. In these studies, it has been proven that estrogen is effective on skin aging and it has been shown that estrogen prevents skin aging by affecting skin thickness, wrinkles and skin moisture, and increases the water holding capacity of the dermis by causing an increase in glycosaminoglycans [2].

Biotechnological active ingredients preventing hyperpigmentation

Hyperpigmentation is a common symptom of aging and chronic UV exposure, often appearing as abnormal brown spots, especially in areas that are frequently exposed to the sun [2].

Diseases of the skin with hyperpigmentation are a group of diseases characterized by abnormal skin darkening as a result of excessive melanin production from normal melanocytes. The most common of these diseases are melasma and postinflammatory hyperpigmentation. Diseases of the skin with hyperpigmentation are quite common, and melasma and postinflammatory hyperpigmentation, especially on the face and neck, is an important issue for patients. cosmetic can cause problems and psychosocial stress.

Hyperpigmentation Treatment

Treatment of diseases with hyperpigmentation covers a very long process and treatment is more difficult, especially in dark-skinned individuals [3].

Treatment of hyperpigmentation The most common pathway for tyrosinase inhibition is tyrosinase inhibition. Tyrosinase catalyzes the conversion of L-tyrosine to dihydroxyphenylalanine (DOPA) and the conversion of DOPA to quinone, two of which are rate-limiting steps in melanin synthesis [2]. Tyrosinase is an oxidase, the rate-limiting enzyme for controlling melanin production. Apart from tyrosinase treatment, kojic acid is used for the treatment of hyperpigmentation.

Kojic acid is an inexpensive water-soluble fungal secondary metabolite produced by Aspergillus and Penicillium species. It has valuable biological properties such as antioxidant, antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory, and has the capacity to prevent hyperpigmentation and the formation of skin wrinkles. Its primary use in cosmetics is for its skin whitening properties; however, there are problems with skin compatibility and stability even at normal temperatures. Therefore, research on alternative tyrosinase inhibitors is ongoing [2].

Biotechnological active substances with sunscreen effect

The sun's rays are emitted at different wavelengths. Visible light and ultraviolet rays reach the earth from these rays. Ultraviolet rays, which have several types, can cause adverse effects when exposed to intense sun, especially during the summer months. With the effect of sun rays, the skin thickens 2-4 times, wrinkles occur on the skin. As a result of overexposure to the sun, spots and vascularization can be seen on the skin. All these effects cause premature aging of the skin. There is an association between skin cancers and direct exposure to intense amounts of sun [4].

Since UV rays can penetrate down to the lower layers of the skin, they can cause freckle formation by causing reduction of collagen, cell damage on the skin and accumulation of melanin pigment [4].

Today, there are many initiatives and studies to combat these effects. Photoprotective molecules, such as carotenoids, isolated from Antarctic bacteria resistant to UV rays and used in biotechnological applications can be given as examples. Biopterin glucose is a pigment produced from marine planktonic cyano bacteria and protects the skin from the negative effects of UVA radiation. Therefore, it is used in the formulation of sunscreen cosmetics [2].

Biotechnological active substances used in perfumes

Fragrance compounds are an important part of food, perfume and personal care products. For this reason, studies have generally focused on the biotechnological production of natural flavors such as benzaldehyde, vanillin, tetramethylpyrazine and 2-phenylalanine. Lipases also have potential applications in perfumery as they are active in the production of surfactants and flavors. Likewise, monoacyl glycerols and diacylglycerols are produced by esterification of glycerols and are used as surfactants in the perfume industry [2].


Like all our organs, our skin, which protects us from external influences and creates our appearance, is also very important. For this reason, the ingredients of the cosmetic products we use are very important.

We should use these products not only by being influenced by the internet or suggestions, but also by getting help from people who are experts in this business. otherwise, we may cause irreversible damage to our skin and body in the long run. In short, before you read the content and make sure that it is good for you, please do nothing. cosmetic Do not use the product. See these substances as a drug and remember, less decision, most harm.

With love.


  • Evren Algın Yapar, Sakine Tuncay Tanrıverdi, ''Anti-Aging Cosmetic Approaches and Product Components'', Balıkesir Journal of Health Sciences, 2016
  • Sena İstanbulluoğlu, Selin Seda Timur, R. Neslihan Gürsoy, ''Biotechnological Active and Excipients Used in Cosmetics'', Hacettepe University Journal of the Faculty of Pharmacy, 2020
  • Dr. Selma Korkmaz, Dr. İjlal Erturan, ''Hyperpigmentation Treatment and New Approaches'', Department of Dermatology, Süleyman Demirel University Faculty of Medicine, 2009
  • (E.T: 17.11.2020 00:24)

About the Author

Zeynep Aktas

Born in 1998, a Chemical Engineer who believes that science will save the world and works to become a scientist.

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