Chronic exposure of human skin to ultraviolet light causes premature aging, or photoaging. As skin undergoes photoaging, type I collagen bundles, which are found in the dermis beneath the top layer of skin and provide strength and support to the skin, break down. This leads to wrinkles, fragility and loss of support and elasticity.

“The best way to prevent damage to type I collagen from sunlight is to wear sunscreen consistently every day, if possible, and especially when spending time outdoors,” says Frank Wang, MD, William B. Taylor Endowed Professor. of Clinical Dermatology said at UM Medical School. .

Injecting the most popular type of dermal filler, cross-linked hyaluronic acid, into photoaged skin can reverse photoaging-related skin changes, experts observed in a new study.

These fillers are usually applied to the skin to reduce lines and wrinkles. They are believed to provide clinical improvement by adding volume to the skin, but researchers have found that cross-linked hyaluronic acid also stimulates the production of new type I collagen in the dermis.

The filler works so quickly, stimulating collagen production within weeks of injection, and is long-lasting, promoting more collagen deposition over the course of a year.

These results show how fillers improve the appearance of skin in the short term — a combination of filling and collagen. Additionally, because newly formed dermal collagen persists for many years, the results also provide insight that fillers may promote long-term clinical improvement months or even a year after injection.

“A single injection of cross-linked hyaluronic acid dermal filler can lead to rapid and long-lasting skin improvement by stimulating collagen deposition, and furthermore, repeated injections can add more collagen,” Wang said. , may ultimately reduce the need for retreatment,” Wang said. .

Additional authors include Thy Thy Do, Noah Smith, Jeffrey S. Orringer, Sewon Kang, John J. Voorhees, and Gary J. Fisher, all of the UM Department of Dermatology.

Funding/Disclosures: Galderma donated syringes containing cross-linked hyaluronic acid for research purposes but had no involvement in the design or conduct of the study or the collection, management, analysis and interpretation of data. Galderma was not involved in the preparation or review of the manuscript. This study was supported by the University of Michigan Department of Dermatology Cosmetic Research Fund. and a Career Development Award from the Dermatology Foundation.