Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Enzyme in cosmetic products can act as allergen via the skin

10.04.2015

Papain is an important industrial protein-degrading enzyme that is used, for example, in the food and cosmetic industries. When humans or animals come in contact with papain, strong allergic reactions of the skin can be the result, as scientists from the Messerli Research Institute of the University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna, the Medical University of Vienna, and the University of Vienna have found out. Their study was published in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology.

Papain is found naturally in papaya and is often referred to as a “plant-based pepsin” in reference to the digestive enzyme pepsin that is present in the stomach. Erika Jensen-Jarolim, Head of the Department of Comparative Medicine at the Messerli Research Institute, and her team researched the effect of papain directly on the skin of mice as well as on skin cells in the petri dish.


Professor Erika Jensen-Jarolim

Michael Bernkopf/Vetmeduni Vienna

The cosmetic industry uses papain in exfoliating treatments to remove dead surface skin. There even are enzyme-based shampoos for house pets to clean the fur and make it easier to brush.

How papain induces allergic reactions

Skin consists of several layers joined via cellular connections called “tight junctions”. First authors Caroline Stremnitzer and Krisztina Manzano-Szalai and the project team showed that papain induces a breakdown of these cell-cell junctions. On the skin, papain results in a loss of the barrier function. “After just a short period of time, papain increased vascular permeability and inflammatory cells infiltrated the skin,” Jensen-Jarolim explains.

Around two weeks after being exposed to papain, the researchers found antibodies to papain in the mice. These immunoglobulins are the cause of the allergic reaction toward the enzyme. “Exposed mice not only experienced a loss of the barrier function of the skin, but also had a specific allergic sensitization toward papain. The animals developed an allergy,” says allergy expert Jensen-Jarolim.

Caution is called for with papain-containing products

But the permeation of the skin barrier does not appear to be a prerequisite for sensitization toward papain. “The enzyme remains allergenic even when its enzymatic function has been blocked,” explains Jensen-Jarolim. The disruption to the skin barrier, she says, is essential for the infiltration of other allergens and bacteria.

In humans and in animals, diseases of the skin such as atopic dermatitis, commonly referred to as eczema, involve an increased permeability of the skin with a heightened risk for bacterial, fungal, or viral colonisation. Besides genetic factors, allergenic enzymes from external sources may also contribute to the symptoms.

It is striking that papain has an enormous structural similarity with one of the most important house dust mite allergens. The authors conclude that sensitization toward these house dust mite allergens follows the same principle. “People with sensitive skin as well as small children should avoid the enzyme (EC Number 3.4.22.2) as much as possible and observe the ingredients declaration for consumer products as regulated by EU Directive 2000/13/EC,” says Jensen-Jarolim.


Service:
The article “Papain Degrades Tight Junction Proteins of Human Keratinocytes In Vitro and Sensitizes C57BL/6 Mice via the Skin Independent of its Enzymatic Activity or TLR4 Activation” by Caroline Stremnitzer, Krisztina Manzano-Szalai, Anna Willensdorfer, Philipp Starkl, Mario Pieper, Peter König, Michael Mildner, Erwin Tschachler, Ursula Reichart and Erika Jensen-Jarolim was published in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25705851

About the Messerli Research Institute
The Messerli Research Institute was founded in 2010 with support from the Messerli Foundation (Switzerland) under management of the University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna and in cooperation with the Medical University of Vienna and the University of Vienna. The research is devoted to the interaction between humans and animals, as well as its theoretical principles in animal cognition and behaviour, comparative medicine and ethology. The institute’s work is characterized by its broad interdisciplinary approach (biology, human medicine, veterinary medicine, philosophy, psychology, law) and strong international focus. http://www.vetmeduni.ac.at/messerli

About the University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna
The University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna (Vetmeduni Vienna) is one of the leading academic and research institutions in the field of veterinary medicine in Europe. The university’s focus is on the research areas of animal health, food safety, animal husbandry and animal protection as well as biomedical basics. Vetmeduni Vienna employs about 1,300 people and currently has an enrolment of 2,300 students. The campus in Vienna’s Floridsdorf district houses five university clinics as well as various research facilities. Two research institutes on Vienna’s Wilhelminenberg and a teaching and research property in Lower Austria also form part of Vetmeduni Vienna. Vetmeduni Vienna celebrated 250 years of existence in 2015. http://www.vetmeduni.ac.at

Medical University of Vienna
The Medical University of Vienna is one of Europe’s most renowned educational and research institutions in medicine. With nearly 7,500 students, it is the largest medical educational institution in the German-speaking world. Its 27 university clinics and three clinical institutes, 12 theoretical centres and many highly-specialised laboratories also make it one of the most important elite research institutions in Europe in the biomedical field. The university has more than 48,000 m² available for clinical research. http://www.meduniwien.ac.at

Scientific contact:
Prof. Dr Erika-Jensen-Jarolim
Comparative Medicine
Messerli Resarch Institute –
University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna, Medical Wien of Vienna, and University of Vienna
erika.jensen-jarolim@vetmeduni.ac.at

Released by:
Heike Hochhauser
Public Relations and Communications
University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna (Vetmeduni Vienna)
T +43 1 25077-1151
heike.hochhauser@vetmeduni.ac.at

Weitere Informationen:

http://www.vetmeduni.ac.at/en/infoservice/presseinformation/press-releases-2015/...

Heike Hochhauser | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Why might reading make myopic?
18.07.2018 | Universitätsklinikum Tübingen

nachricht Unique brain 'fingerprint' can predict drug effectiveness
11.07.2018 | McGill University

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: First evidence on the source of extragalactic particles

For the first time ever, scientists have determined the cosmic origin of highest-energy neutrinos. A research group led by IceCube scientist Elisa Resconi, spokesperson of the Collaborative Research Center SFB1258 at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), provides an important piece of evidence that the particles detected by the IceCube neutrino telescope at the South Pole originate from a galaxy four billion light-years away from Earth.

To rule out other origins with certainty, the team led by neutrino physicist Elisa Resconi from the Technical University of Munich and multi-wavelength...

Im Focus: Magnetic vortices: Two independent magnetic skyrmion phases discovered in a single material

For the first time a team of researchers have discovered two different phases of magnetic skyrmions in a single material. Physicists of the Technical Universities of Munich and Dresden and the University of Cologne can now better study and understand the properties of these magnetic structures, which are important for both basic research and applications.

Whirlpools are an everyday experience in a bath tub: When the water is drained a circular vortex is formed. Typically, such whirls are rather stable. Similar...

Im Focus: Breaking the bond: To take part or not?

Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.

A frequently used reaction in organic chemistry is nucleophilic substitution. It plays, for example, an important role in in the synthesis of new chemical...

Im Focus: New 2D Spectroscopy Methods

Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.

"Put an excitation into the system and observe how it evolves." According to physicist Professor Tobias Brixner, this is the credo of optical spectroscopy....

Im Focus: Chemical reactions in the light of ultrashort X-ray pulses from free-electron lasers

Ultra-short, high-intensity X-ray flashes open the door to the foundations of chemical reactions. Free-electron lasers generate these kinds of pulses, but there is a catch: the pulses vary in duration and energy. An international research team has now presented a solution: Using a ring of 16 detectors and a circularly polarized laser beam, they can determine both factors with attosecond accuracy.

Free-electron lasers (FELs) generate extremely short and intense X-ray flashes. Researchers can use these flashes to resolve structures with diameters on the...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Leading experts in Diabetes, Metabolism and Biomedical Engineering discuss Precision Medicine

13.07.2018 | Event News

Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP: Fine Tuning for Surfaces

12.07.2018 | Event News

11th European Wood-based Panel Symposium 2018: Meeting point for the wood-based materials industry

03.07.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Global study of world's beaches shows threat to protected areas

19.07.2018 | Earth Sciences

New creepy, crawly search and rescue robot developed at Ben-Gurion U

19.07.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Metal too 'gummy' to cut? Draw on it with a Sharpie or glue stick, science says

19.07.2018 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>