Are your capillaries the key to well-ageing?

By Julia Wray | Published: 13-Oct-2022

Shiseido has discovered that pericytes on the outer side of dermal capillaries may promote epidermal regeneration, and their transformation into epidermal stem-like cells can be protected from ageing by a yuzu-derived ingredient

Capillaries could be the key to skin anti-ageing, Shiseido Company scientists have found.

Research from the Japanese brand owner indicates that pericytes on the outer side of dermal capillaries – the delicate blood cells that supply skin with nutrients and oxygen – may promote epidermal regeneration.

Pericytes are cells that adhere to the vascular endothelial cells of capillaries to stabilise the capillary structure.

They may promote skin regeneration by moving from the capillary loop to the epidermis and transforming into epidermal stem-like cells, said Shiseido.

The company also found that ageing causes variance in the direction of the capillary loop running toward the epidermis.

This results in the expansion of distance between the capillaries and the epidermis.

Here, Netrin-1 (a protein that is released from the epidermis to control the attraction and repulsion of nerve axons and the migration of nerve-related cells) increases abnormally with ageing and repels the Netrin-1 receptor (UNC5B), expressed at the top of the capillary loop.

This distances the capillaries from the epidermis.

According to Shiseido, this phenomenon would inhibit pericyte migration from capillaries in ageing skin and reduce the supply of epidermal stem cells.

The findings, said the company, suggest that the supply of epidermal stem cells derived from pericytes may be inhibited in ageing skin. 

<i>Positional relationship between epidermal stem cells and pericytes</i>

Positional relationship between epidermal stem cells and pericytes

Shiseido also found yuzu (Citrus junos) fruit extract to suppress the expression of Netrin-1.

It is expected that the yuzu fruit extract will regulate the delivery of epidermal stem cells from capillaries by appropriately suppressing the excessive expression of Netrin-1 and maintaining the distance between capillaries and the epidermis, the scientists added.

Part of Shiseido’s study results will be presented at the 47th Annual Meeting of the Japanese Society for Investigative Dermatology, held 2-4 December 2022, and the 30th Annual Meeting of the Japanese Vascular Biology and Medicine Organization held 16-17 December 2022.

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