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Epidermal Growth Factor for Skin Regeneration
By: Rhonda Allison
Posted: November 29, 2010, from the December 2010 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.
Although the search continues for the proverbial fountain of youth, advancements in skin care have resulted in progress toward its discovery. One such development was the founding of epidermal growth factor (EGF) in 1986 by scientists Stanley Cohen and Rita Levi-Motalcini. The duo received a Nobel Prize in Medicine for their work, which opened the door for understanding how cells communicate with each other during cellular growth. This forever changed the landscape of skin rejuvenation, particularly for the skin care formulators wise enough to recognize the power of EGF.
A lab-derived oligopeptide, EGF is an age-prevention ingredient that supports cell renewal and wound repair. It has potent regenerating properties, making it valuable for age prevention and age reversal of the skin. EGF is a vital protein found in the fibroblast cells of the dermal layer, and it works to stimulate cells to produce collagen.
How does EGF work?
As an essential part of skin regeneration when trauma has taken place, EGF works by attracting cells to a wound site in order to begin the repair process. The vital protein is released by platelets during the inflammation stage of healing, then attracts cells to the injured area. These responsive cells, known as osteoblasts, process EGF, speeding up wound-healing, allowing the skin to repair itself evenly and quickly.
As EGF is applied to the skin, tissue regeneration begins. The protein supports cell renewal by assisting in the synthesis of proteins and increasing circulation, mitosis, the number of fibroblasts, the accumulation of collagen and blood-vessel formation.
The production of natural EGF significantly slows when ultraviolet (UV) light is present, hindering the body’s ability to repair itself. Because the skin is constantly subjected to UV rays during the daylight hours, topical growth factors become useful tools in reversing the harmful effects of these rays.
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