News - Synthos CARE



Anti-pollution effect of VECTICELL® Curcumin

The problem of smog is well-known to inhabitants of cities and towns. The World Health Organization has declared pollution to be the world's largest environmental health risk. Urban dust is very often suspended in water vapour in the air and therefore it has a direct effect on human skin cells - it dries the skin, destroys the lipid layer, accelerates skin aging. This is because toxins penetrate the sebaceous and sweat glands and release free radicals. The smog also causes discolouration and irritation on the skin. That is why cosmetic companies outdo each other in the preparation of anti-pollution products. We also followed these trends and tested our VECTICELL® Curcumin formulation for its anti-smog properties.



We conducted an experiment demonstrating the anti-smog action of the VECTICELL® Curcumin formulation. The experiment was 3-stage:

a) Demonstration of the effect of cytotoxic urban dust particles (NIST® SRM® 1649b) on mature human fibroblasts (NHDF-c adult, PromoCell) using MTT test measuring cell metabolic activity. MTT test was performed on the cells after 24 and 48 hours of incubation with a harmful substance. After 48 hours of incubation, Urban Dust caused death of all the cells. The results of cell viability analysis after 24 hours of incubation are shown in Figure 1.


Figure 1 : Effect of Urban Dust on the viability of mature human fibroblasts depending on concentration


Summary: In the presented experiment the significant influence of Urban Dust on the decrease of fibroblast survival was shown. The lowest applied amount of urban dust, i.e. 0.1 µg, caused a 28% decrease in cell survival. As the amount of Urban Dust increased, cell mortality increased and with the highest amount of Urban Dust of 500 µg, a 86% decrease in viability was observed. To sum up, urban dust has a cytotoxic effect on mature human fibroblast cells.

b) Demonstration of anti-pollution VECTICELL® Curcumin. On the basis of MTT test with Urban Dust performed on human fibroblasts, 3 amounts of urban dust put into the hole were selected. Urban Dust cytotoxicity inhibitory effects on human cells after application on human fibroblast cells VECTICELL® Curcumin was tested for the three amounts of urban dust: 25 µg, 100 µg and 200 µg. The cells were incubated at various concentrations of VECTICELL® Curcumin for 1.5 hour. After initial incubation, appropriate Urban Dust concentrations were applied on the plate. The MTT test was performed after 24 hours of incubation with a harmful substance and VECTICELL® Curcumin. The results are shown in Figures 2-3.


Figure 2 : Improvement of cell viability with VECTICELL® Curcumin



Figure 3 : Cell viability after adding different amounts of Urban Dust after incubating the cells with VECTICELL® Curcumin



Summary: Application of VECTICELL® Curcumin on cells leads to an increase in cell proliferation. VECTICELL® Curcumin, when used at any concentration tested, effectively protects human fibroblast cells from the harmful cytotoxic effects of Urban Dust. However, the best protection against cell death is observed at 80 and 100 µM. VECTICELL® Curcumin does not increase cell death rate even after adding 200 µg of Urban Dust per hole.

a) Demonstration of the lack of anti-pollution action of free curcumin. In order to compare the effect of free curcumin on the protection of cells against Urban Dust and its protective effects, the same concentrations of free curcumin as previously closed in liposomes were applied to plates and the same amounts of urban dust were applied. Cells were incubated in various concentrations of Free Curcumin for 1.5 hour. After initial incubation, appropriate Urban Dust concentrations were applied on the plate. The MTT test was performed after 24 hours of incubation with a harmful substance and Free Curcumin. The results are shown in Figures 4-5.


Figure 4 : Decrease in cell viability under the influence of free curcumin



Figure 5 : Decreased viability of human fibroblast cells after application of free curcumin and Urban Dust



Summary: Free curcumin does not protect against the cytotoxic effects of Urban Dust and leads to a decrease in cell viability. With an increase in the concentration of free curcumin when applying Urban Dust, a decrease in viability of fibroblast cells was observed in each amount tested. Cell viability decreases up to a concentration of 60 µM applied. There is no significant difference between the use of free curcumin at 60 µM and a higher concentration. Free curcumin and Urban Dust have a cumulative effect on cell death rate.

We can clearly state that the VECTICELL® Curcumin formulation has an anti-pollution effect, while the use of free curcumin in the same concentrations increases the cytotoxic effect of urban dust.