LSMU Researchers Pioneer Polymer Films for Hyperpigmentation Treatment

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A team of researchers at LSMU has introduced a groundbreaking solution that may facilitate the treatment of uneven skin tone. The Experts in pharmaceuticals, plant materials, and dermatological products, Gabrielė Vilkickytė, Prof. Lina Raudonė, Dr. Modestas Žilius, and Dr. Agnė Mazurkevičiūtė, proudly present their latest creation – a skin film designed to reduce hyperpigmentation resulting from UV rays, melasma, and inflammatory skin conditions.

A Remedy for Different Skin Problems

According to the researchers at LSMU, up to 90% of Caucasians and Asians are affected by hyperpigmentation caused by melasma, sunburn and post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, with older women being at the highest risk of developing skin pigmentation problems.

According to the researchers, uneven skin tone is a greater concern for some people than premature wrinkles. For this reason, they chose to develop a product that could be used to both reduce and prevent uneven skin tone. The antioxidants contained in the skin films can inhibit the skin ageing process and provide protection against the effects of free radicals.

The innovative technology of the lingonberry extract-enriched skin films performs several functions simultaneously – eliminating the effects of hyperpigmentation, acting as a preventive measure, protecting against UV rays, and helping to promote a healthy-looking and even complexion.

Formulated with Lingonberry Leaf Extract

Gabrielė Vilkickytė, the author of the product idea, has shared that the choice of the active ingredient in the skin films was not accidental. According to scientific literature, arbutin, which is extracted from lingonberry plant materials, has a strong skin lightening and brightening effect. It inhibits the activity of enzymes that stimulate melanin production, reduces skin pigmentation, slows down the effects of UV rays and lightens the skin. The research team isolated arbutin from lingonberry leaves using gel-filtration chromatography.

User-Friendly Design

The innovative skin films developed by the researchers are versatile because they can be applied to all targeted areas of the body: on the hands, face, or intimate areas. The precisely dosed, standardised amount of active ingredient ensures efficacy, while the polymeric form ensures versatility. The polymeric films are flexible, have a comfortable thickness and the right moisture level, so they can be applied under clothing, unlike semi-solid forms (e.g. gels), and can be removed from the skin without causing irritation, unlike the usual patches. The researchers claim that the polymers chosen are non-toxic and do not cause allergic reactions.

Further Development of the Product

In the near future, the LSMU team hopes to develop a prototype of the polymeric films, i.e. a pilot product that would effectively adhere to the skin, stay in place for at least 24 hours, and gradually release the active ingredient to reduce hyperpigmentation.

This work has been conducted under the project titled “Development of Knowledge Commercialisation and Technology Transfer at Lithuanian University of Health Sciences (LSMU-TTO2)” (project No. 13.1.1-CPVA-K-703-04-0010).