Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Chemistry of tanning

26.06.2002


It’s no coincidence that the process of turning animal skins into leather is called tanning. When people tan, UV radiation from the sun breaks down protein in our skin cells and causes, over time, wrinkles and leathery-looking skin. According to the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), most sun exposure occurs before the age of 18. With major summer "beach time" remaining, here’s some information from the American Chemical Society, the world’s largest scientific society, on how consumers can protect themselves and their families from the sun’s harmful rays:

Perfect tan made in the shade: Everyone knows that too much exposure to the sun can cause skin cancer and premature aging. Everyone from Jennifer Aniston to your neighbor is using self-tanners to recreate that coveted bronze glow. But how do they work and are they safe? According to Chemical & Engineering News, self-tanners contain an active ingredient called dihydroxyacetone (DHA), a nontoxic, simple sugar found in baby formula and fish oil. DHA turns skin brown in a process called the Maillard reaction, better known to food chemists for making beer golden brown. Proteins in our skin interact with sugars to create brown or golden-brown compounds. DHA doesn’t penetrate further than the outermost, dead layer of skin.

Making sense of sunscreens: From moisturizers to lipsticks, sales of personal care products formulated with sunscreen have exploded. The sun’s rays are more damaging now then ever because the earth’s protective ozone layer is depleted, but with 17 active sunscreen ingredients approved for use in the United States, how do you choose? According to Chemical & Engineering News, sunscreens with inorganic ingredients such as titanium dioxide and zinc oxide reflect and scatter UV light. Sunscreens made with organic ingredients like OMC and avobenzone absorb UV light and dissipate it as heat. SPF (sun protection factor) measures how effectively a sunscreen protects against UVB rays that burn skin.



Newer sunscreens offer greater protection against sun’s rays: Craig Bonda, a chemist at the C.P. Hall Company in Bedford Park, Ill., has developed a longer-lasting sunscreen that protects wearers against both UVB and UVA radiation. Until recently, most sunscreens protected only against UVB — the ultraviolet rays that cause sunburn. The newest sunscreens absorb or reflect the full spectrum of ultraviolet radiation, including UVA, which causes skin to age and wrinkle prematurely and may also cause certain skin cancers. Avobenzone, a chemical used in many full-spectrum sunscreens, loses its effectiveness upon prolonged exposure to the sun. Bonda found that avobenzone breaks down more slowly when the chemical DEHN is added

Tiffany Steele McAvoy | EurekAlert!

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht 'Icebreaker' protein opens genome for t cell development, Penn researchers find
21.02.2018 | University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine

nachricht Similarities found in cancer initiation in kidney, liver, stomach, pancreas
21.02.2018 | Washington University School of Medicine

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: In best circles: First integrated circuit from self-assembled polymer

For the first time, a team of researchers at the Max-Planck Institute (MPI) for Polymer Research in Mainz, Germany, has succeeded in making an integrated circuit (IC) from just a monolayer of a semiconducting polymer via a bottom-up, self-assembly approach.

In the self-assembly process, the semiconducting polymer arranges itself into an ordered monolayer in a transistor. The transistors are binary switches used...

Im Focus: Demonstration of a single molecule piezoelectric effect

Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale

Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...

Im Focus: Hybrid optics bring color imaging using ultrathin metalenses into focus

For photographers and scientists, lenses are lifesavers. They reflect and refract light, making possible the imaging systems that drive discovery through the microscope and preserve history through cameras.

But today's glass-based lenses are bulky and resist miniaturization. Next-generation technologies, such as ultrathin cameras or tiny microscopes, require...

Im Focus: Stem cell divisions in the adult brain seen for the first time

Scientists from the University of Zurich have succeeded for the first time in tracking individual stem cells and their neuronal progeny over months within the intact adult brain. This study sheds light on how new neurons are produced throughout life.

The generation of new nerve cells was once thought to taper off at the end of embryonic development. However, recent research has shown that the adult brain...

Im Focus: Interference as a new method for cooling quantum devices

Theoretical physicists propose to use negative interference to control heat flow in quantum devices. Study published in Physical Review Letters

Quantum computer parts are sensitive and need to be cooled to very low temperatures. Their tiny size makes them particularly susceptible to a temperature...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

2nd International Conference on High Temperature Shape Memory Alloys (HTSMAs)

15.02.2018 | Event News

Aachen DC Grid Summit 2018

13.02.2018 | Event News

How Global Climate Policy Can Learn from the Energy Transition

12.02.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Researchers invent tiny, light-powered wires to modulate brain's electrical signals

21.02.2018 | Life Sciences

The “Holy Grail” of peptide chemistry: Making peptide active agents available orally

21.02.2018 | Life Sciences

Atomic structure of ultrasound material not what anyone expected

21.02.2018 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>