Type XVII collagen (COL17) is found to regulate the proliferation of epidermal cells and therefore the thickness of juvenile and aged skin, suggesting COL17 can potentially be used for future anti-aging strategies.
Skin is the body's largest organ and is constantly confronted with a range of external stimuli including microorganisms and physical stress. Epidermis, the outer part of the skin, functions as a barrier to the external environment and works to prevent the loss of water from inside the body.
Neonatal mice (postnatal day 1) lacking COL17 showed epidermal hyper proliferation and thickened skin (right panels) compared to control skins (left panels). Different staining methods are applied in the upper panels and the lower panels. Scale bar: 20μm.
Credit: Watanabe M., et al. eLIFE, July 11, 2017.
As abnormalities in epidermal thickness can impair the properties of one's skin, the proliferation of epidermal cells is tightly regulated in organismal development and physical aging although most of the underlying mechanisms are unknown.
Using mouse and human skin cells as well as mathematical modelling, Dr. Ken Natsuga and Dr. Hiroshi Shimizu of Hokkaido University and their collaborators identified type XVII collagen (COL17), a protein expressed in the basal layer of the epidermis, as a key molecule that controls epidermal proliferation in non-haired skin.
The team found that COL17 prevents the epidermal cells from over-proliferating and thus preventing the skin from thickening in neonatal mice in coordination with Wnt signaling, which is generally involved in the proliferation of stem cells. In the experiments using mice, they also discovered that physical aging induces epidermal thickening and alters epithelial polarity accompanied by drastic alteration of COL17 distribution in the skin. Introduction of human COL17 helped the epidermis maintain its juvenile state even with the advancement of aging.
"Our findings advance our understanding of how the proliferation of epidermal cells is regulated at different stages of a mammal's life. Although further study is needed to uncover how COL17 expression is regulated, this protein could be a promising component in future anti-aging strategies for skin," says Natsuga.
Naoki Namba | EurekAlert!
Serious children’s infections also spreading in Switzerland
26.07.2017 | Universitätsspital Bern
New vaccine production could improve flu shot accuracy
25.07.2017 | Duke University
Strong light-matter coupling in these semiconducting tubes may hold the key to electrically pumped lasers
Light-matter quasi-particles can be generated electrically in semiconducting carbon nanotubes. Material scientists and physicists from Heidelberg University...
Fraunhofer IPA has developed a proximity sensor made from silicone and carbon nanotubes (CNT) which detects objects and determines their position. The materials and printing process used mean that the sensor is extremely flexible, economical and can be used for large surfaces. Industry and research partners can use and further develop this innovation straight away.
At first glance, the proximity sensor appears to be nothing special: a thin, elastic layer of silicone onto which black square surfaces are printed, but these...
3-D shape acquisition using water displacement as the shape sensor for the reconstruction of complex objects
A global team of computer scientists and engineers have developed an innovative technique that more completely reconstructs challenging 3D objects. An ancient...
Physicists have developed a new technique that uses electrical voltages to control the electron spin on a chip. The newly-developed method provides protection from spin decay, meaning that the contained information can be maintained and transmitted over comparatively large distances, as has been demonstrated by a team from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute. The results have been published in Physical Review X.
For several years, researchers have been trying to use the spin of an electron to store and transmit information. The spin of each electron is always coupled...
What is the mass of a proton? Scientists from Germany and Japan successfully did an important step towards the most exact knowledge of this fundamental constant. By means of precision measurements on a single proton, they could improve the precision by a factor of three and also correct the existing value.
To determine the mass of a single proton still more accurate – a group of physicists led by Klaus Blaum and Sven Sturm of the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear...
26.07.2017 | Event News
21.07.2017 | Event News
19.07.2017 | Event News
26.07.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
26.07.2017 | Life Sciences
26.07.2017 | Earth Sciences