Kao research opens door for better understanding of wrinkle formation

New technology shows how skin structure changes at various levels can impact the appearance

Kao Corporation has announced a breakthrough in our understanding of how structural changes in the skin affect wrinkle formation.

Its Biological Science Research Laboratory and Skin Care Products Research Laboratory – in collaboration with the Computational Optics Group at the University of Tsukuba – used a technique called Jones matrix-optical coherence tomography (JM-OCT) to unravel the mystery surrounding how changes at various depths result in skin wrinkling.

JM-OTC is an evolution of standard OTC (a method of observing the inside of the skin without damaging it), which uses algorithms to divide up the skin into small sections by depth.

A study, involving a group of 21 female volunteers in their 70s, measured and calculated the average depth of the wrinkles detected within a 10mm square of the eye corner area.

A correlation was observed between the local birefringence (denoting the condition of collagen fibre structure) at a depth of 88-99μm from the skin’s surface and the mean wrinkle depth, suggesting that the deeper the wrinkles the greater the degeneration of the collagen structure of those areas.

Kao stresses that further improvements in the JM-OTC method will facilitate better understanding of skin change in individuals and could be used to provide appropriate, personalised skin regimes.