UNITED STATES PATENT:
Non-Toxic Skin Cancer Therapy
with Copper Peptides (2017)
GHK and DNA: Resetting the
Human Genome to Health
BioMed Research International (2014)
The Effect of Human Peptide
GHK Relevant to
Nervous System Function
and Cognitive Decline
Brain Sciences (2017)
Tri-Peptide GHK-Cu and
Acute Lung Injury in Mice
Oncotarget (2016)
New Data of the Cosmeceutical
and TriPeptide GHK
SOFW Journal (2015)
Biomarkers Reveal Potential
Skin Toxicity Caused by
Certain Copper Compounds
Scientific Reports (2016)

GHK-Cu May Prevent
Oxidative Stress in Skin
by Regulating Copper and
Modifying Expression of
Numerous Antioxidant Genes Cosmetics (2015)
GHK Induces
Programmed Cell Death
in Neuroblastoma Cells
Biotech & Biomaterials (2012)
GHK Peptide as a
Natural Modulator of
Multiple Cellular Pathways
in Skin Regeneration (2015)
Emphysema-Related
Lung Destruction and
its Reversal by GHK
Genome Medicine (2012)
GHK:
The Human Skin Remodeling Peptide Induces Anti-Cancer
Expression and DNA Repair Analytical Oncology (2014)
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Sensible Suntanninglounging woman in the sun

A certain amount of sunlight on your skin may be necessary for good health. Sunlight activates a gene called pom-C, which in turn helps create melanin that determines skin color and enhances sex drive, the endorphins or "happiness hormones", and leptin, which helps burn fat to keep you thin.

Tanning itself is not harmful. The production of melanin in the skin creates a powerful protective and anti-oxidant system in the skin. The key is to obtain tanning with a minimum of damaging free radical damage to other areas of the skin.

Problems with Sunscreen Chemicals

Many commonly used chemical sunscreens may be dangerous to your health. Many sunscreen chemicals have been banned in the European Community. Up to 35% of an applied sunscreen chemical that is applied to your skin can enter your bloodstream. There is no way to produce sunscreens that are both protective and transparent.

Safer, Faster Suntanning with Less Peeling

The continuing development of copper peptides has the goal of developing safer suntanning products. It has been reported that some individuals have used copper peptide skin repair creams for suntanning. However, objective should always be to develop a better, safer method for inducing tan formation while minimizing undesirable effects on the skin.

Questions or Advice?

Email Dr. Loren Pickart at drlorenpickart@gmail.com

Alternate Email: ghkcopperpeptides@gmail.com

Call us at 1-800-405-1912 Monday Through Friday (8 am to 6 pm) PST

The general goal for safer suntanning is based on the following principles:man and woman canoodling

1. Decrease total sunlight exposure by increasing the skin's efficiency of sunlight-induced melanogenesis.

Dr. Martin Rieger has discussed the chemistry of oxidation and peroxidation his publications, emphasizes that melanin, the skin's pigment, is also a free radical scavenger, and somewhat "photo-protective" in a sense which that is unrelated to its light-scattering ability.

Increasing the efficiency of sunlight-induced suntanning would reduce the amount of sun exposure to produce the skin's melanin and reach a desired tan level. This reduces the skin damage incurred while tanning. Copper is the catalytic metal in the enzyme, tyrosinase, that, after suntanning, converts the amino acid tyrosine into the protective skin pigment, melanin. If your skin lacks adequate nutritional copper, no amount of suntanning will produce enough melanin to obtain a tan. Instead, you will only suffer more sunburn.

Clinical researchers at the University of California at San Francisco and the Shanghai Medical University reported that copper peptide creams facilitated an increase in true skin melanin formation (not merely the staining of the skin) even with indoor (non-ultraviolet) light. Copper peptide lotions may create an environment that aids the skin's natural ability to form the protective pigment and anti-oxidant, melanin.

2. Keep the ultraviolet rays (photons) in the upper (epidermal ) layer of the skin.

Melanocytes, the cells responsible for skin pigment, are located in the epidermis, the uppermost layer of skin. In contrast, the network of collagen and elastin which keeps the skin supple, elastic and wrinkle-free, is located deeper down in the dermal layer.

In order to keep more photons in the upper layer with the melanocytes and away from the collagen/elastin, we developed a light diffusing opaque cream by the incorporation of minute particles of the reflective sunblocker - titanium dioxide powder.

By putting the small amount of reflective titanium dioxide into the cream, one can increase this bouncing and diffusion and stop more photons from going deeply into the skin and turn more of them to the side and thus keep them - to a greater extent - in the uppermost skin layer.

3. "Tune" the wavelength of absorbed light to tyrosinase-copper.

The only wavelength of light needed for melanin formation is that wavelength which supplies energy to the melanin-producing enzyme copper-tyrosinase. Photons of a certain wavelength tend to stay in areas where there are molecules that can easily absorb them.

To "tune" the retained photons, copper peptide complexes in the cream can be used. A significant potion of these copper-peptide complexes have structure that is similar to the melanin-forming tyrosinase-copper complex. This should decrease the amount of light needed to activate the melanin producing reaction.

4. Increase anti-oxidant protections on the skin and within the skin with copper peptides and other antioxidants.

Superoxide Dismutase as Measured by the Xanthine Oxidase/NBT Method
Copper Complex
Micromoles per milliliter required for 50% inhibition of free radical oxidation
(lower is better) 
Second Generation Skin Remodeling Copper Peptides 0.11
First Generation Copper Peptides with GHK-Cu 0.36

In order to keep more photons in the upper layer with the melanocytes and away from the collagen/elastin, a light diffusing opaque cream by the incorporation of minute particles of the reflective sunblocker - titanium dioxide powder - can be developed.

Again, by putting the small amount of reflective titanium dioxide into the cream one can increase this bouncing and diffusion and stop more photons from going deeply into the skin and turn more of them to the side and thus keep them - to a greater extent - in the uppermost skin layer.

5.Reduce post-tanning skin peeling.

If less suntanned skin is lost by peeling, less sun exposure will be required to keep the suntan. As suntanning increases pigmentation of the skin it also induces a mild erythema or redness, thus producing the reddish-brown tint to the natural skin color that is so sought for. However, this action produces certain levels of damage to the skin barrier. For example, transepidermal water loss from skin increases. This damage must be promptly repaired or the newly tanned skin will peel off. Skin remodeling copper peptide products help the process of skin barrier repair.

Copper Peptide Body Lotionswoman in the sun

It has been reported that copper peptide lotions help produce great suntans with very little peeling. These types of lotions were originally designed to counter various types of skin irritations, and stimulate skin recovery after irritations and dermal damage. These kinds of copper peptide lotions should always be made from plant materials.

"Inside-Outside" Sun Protection

If you tend to sunburn or plan an extended time in sunlight, take anti-oxidant supplements starting five days before the sunlight exposure. Studies have found that both the topical application of anti-oxidants and the ingestion of supplemental anti-oxidants reduce sun damage.

The following supplements have been recommended by skin researchers.

Anti-Oxidant Supplements That Reduce Suntanning Damage
Supplement Dosage per day  
Beta-carotene 30 mgs  
Mixed carotenoids from algae 50 mgs Contains beta-carotene, cytoxanthin and xanthin, alpha carotene, leutin
Natural Vitamin E
(Do not use pure d-alpha - it blocks the protection of the d-gamma form - gamma is the best protector)
400 units Contains d-alpha-tocopherol, d-beta-tocopherol, d-gamma tocopherol, d-delta tocopherol
Vitamin C 1 gram  
Coenzyme Q-10 30 mgs  
Alpha Lipoic Acid 100 mgs  
Mixed tocotrienols 35 mgs  

Vitamin A/Retinol May Protect from Sun Damagewoman sleeping against the tree

The application of retinol (normal vitamin A - also called vitamin A alcohol) or retinoic acid (vitamin A acid) may block the harmful effects of UV radiation. John Voorhees, M.D. and colleagues of the University of Michigan School reported in a series of 1998 articles published in Nature, New England Journal of Medicine, and Journal of Clinical Investigation that "Our findings suggest that applying retinoic acid or retinol to skin before going out in the sun might be beneficial... We found that ultraviolet irradiation blocks the ability of skin cells to recognize and respond to an essential nutrient called retinoic acid, which skin cells make from vitamin A or retinol.

The inability to respond to retinoic acid triggers a cascade of biochemical changes that upsets the normal balance between healthy and dying skin cells. In essence, UV causes a functional vitamin A deficiency in human skin. We also found that pre-treating skin with retinoic acid---the active form of vitamin A---before UV exposure limits the extent of the harmful biochemical changes."

According to Gary J. Fisher, Ph.D., the study's co-author, UV causes a major loss of retinoic acid receptors found in human skin cells. "Retinoic acid receptors are the molecular mediators of the biological actions of vitamin A. When retinoic acid receptors are lost, it is as if the skin has no vitamin A," Fisher explained. "This is a bad situation because vitamin A is required for normal skin development and function. Retinoic acid receptors, when activated by retinoic acid, transfer genetic instructions from DNA to the cell's protein-producing factory telling it to assemble proteins needed for skin cell function.

"Eight hours after skin was exposed to UV radiation in our study, amounts of retinoic acid receptor messenger RNA and protein were as much as 70 percent lower than control levels. They remained below normal levels for more than 24 hours after exposure," Fisher said. "When skin was pre-treated with retinoic acid and then exposed to UV radiation, the amount of messenger RNA and protein still dropped, but it rebounded to normal levels within 16 hours."

Voorhees explained. "In this process, UV activates a protein complex called AP-1, which causes production of large amounts of enzymes called matrix metalloproteinases or MMPs... These MMPs break apart and degrade collagen and elastin, the major structural materials in skin.

Although the broken-down collagen and elastin are replaced, the repair process is imperfect. This imperfect repair results in a tiny defect in the skin. With repeated UV exposures, the defect grows and eventually results in the wrinkled appearance of sun-damaged skin."

Voorhees and his colleagues believe the the biosynthesis and breakdown of collagen and elastin exist in a dynamic balance that is necessary to maintain healthy skin. "However, if the retinoic acid receptor pathway is disabled by UV radiation, the destructive pathway has free rein to inflict a great deal of damage," Voorhees said.

Sunlight, Skin Damage and Cancerwoman naked in the sun

The application of retinol (normal vitamin A - also called vitamin A alcohol) or retinoic acid (vitamin A acid) may block the harmful effects of UV radiation. John Voorhees, M.D. and colleagues of the University of Michigan School reported in a series of 1998 articles published in Nature, New England Journal of Medicine, and Journal of Clinical Investigation that "Our findings suggest that applying retinoic acid or retinol to skin before going out in the sun might be beneficial... We found that ultraviolet irradiation blocks the ability of skin cells to recognize and respond to an essential nutrient called retinoic acid, which skin cells make from vitamin A or retinol.

The inability to respond to retinoic acid triggers a cascade of biochemical changes that upsets the normal balance between healthy and dying skin cells. In essence, UV causes a functional vitamin A deficiency in human skin. We also found that pre-treating skin with retinoic acid---the active form of vitamin A---before UV exposure limits the extent of the harmful biochemical changes."

According to Gary J. Fisher, Ph.D., the study's co-author, UV causes a major loss of retinoic acid receptors found in human skin cells. "Retinoic acid receptors are the molecular mediators of the biological actions of vitamin A. When retinoic acid receptors are lost, it is as if the skin has no vitamin A," Fisher explained. "This is a bad situation because vitamin A is required for normal skin development and function. Retinoic acid receptors, when activated by retinoic acid, transfer genetic instructions from DNA to the cell's protein-producing factory telling it to assemble proteins needed for skin cell function.

"Eight hours after skin was exposed to UV radiation in our study, amounts of retinoic acid receptor messenger RNA and protein were as much as 70 percent lower than control levels. They remained below normal levels for more than 24 hours after exposure," Fisher said. "When skin was pre-treated with retinoic acid and then exposed to UV radiation, the amount of messenger RNA and protein still dropped, but it rebounded to normal levels within 16 hours."

Voorhees explained. "In this process, UV activates a protein complex called AP-1, which causes production of large amounts of enzymes called matrix metalloproteinases or MMPs... These MMPs break apart and degrade collagen and elastin, the major structural materials in skin.

Although the broken-down collagen and elastin are replaced, the repair process is imperfect. This imperfect repair results in a tiny defect in the skin. With repeated UV exposures, the defect grows and eventually results in the wrinkled appearance of sun-damaged skin."

Voorhees and his colleagues believe the the biosynthesis and breakdown of collagen and elastin exist in a dynamic balance that is necessary to maintain healthy skin. "However, if the retinoic acid receptor pathway is disabled by UV radiation, the destructive pathway has free rein to inflict a great deal of damage," Voorhees said.

Sunlight, Skin Damage and Cancer woman gingerly walking on the beach

The links between excessive sun exposure and cancer mortality are complex but increasing it appears that exposure to sunlight inhibits far more cancer deaths than it causes.

Sunburn and Actinic Damage

Sunburn is the most common form of skin damage caused by the sun. Pain, redness, itching, burning, blistering and peeling of the skin are the most common symptoms of sunburn. Most of the visible symptoms of sunburn begin to subside within three days.

Suntans are the result of increased pigment in the skin coupled with a mild erythema or redness to the skin. Long exposure to sunlight results in actinic skin damage such as deep wrinkling, changes in skin texture, irregular pigmentation, and loss of skin elasticity. In severe cases, actinic skin damage can result in the formation of lesions called actinic keratosis. Actinic keratosis become skin blemishes and 1 to 3% can become cancerous if left untreated to 10 to 20 years.

Moderate suntanning (20 to 30 minutes maximum per day) over a number of days produces the best suntanning results. As pigment (melanin) builds in the skin it adds to your skin protection. Dr. Martin Rieger has discussed the chemistry of oxidation and peroxidation in his publications. He emphasizes that melanin, the skin's pigment, is also a free radical scavenger, and somewhat "photo-protective" in a way that is unrelated to its light-scattering ability. In addition, the skin's natural defenses against oxygen radicals include other anti-oxidants such as Vitamin E and beta-carotene, and the copper-containing protein, superoxide dismutase, all of which de-toxify oxygen radicals and reduce skin damage.

Remember, excessive sun exposure can overwhelm the protective systems in the skin, causing skin damage that produces skin peeling and other types of damage. Dr. Lester Packer (University of California, Berkeley) has published extensively on the role played by antioxidants such as Vitamin E and skin protection. His research found that after absorbing in the UVB radiation from sunlight spectrum, vitamin E is transformed into a free radical (tocopheroxyl) which can regenerate back to vitamin E (tocopherol) via reaction with the skin's vitamin C (ascorbic acid). Packer's hypothesis is that as ultraviolet radiation dosage is gradually increased, these two antioxidant defenses of the skin are overwhelmed. Then free radicals begin to form in the skin and cause various types of cellular damage, including lipid peroxidation and oxidative modification of skin proteins and cellular DNA. Packer has measured the depletion of cutaneous lipid soluble antioxidants (such as Vitamin E) after ultraviolet radiation of the skin. For example, 45 minutes of exposure to the noon-day sun can lower the skin's protective vitamin C levels by 80% and also markedly lower other protective skin anti-oxidants such Vitamin E and beta-carotene. Packer also finds that sunblockers reduce this depletion of dermal antioxidants.

Also keep in mind that after suntanning, it takes the melanocytes 2 to 5 days to produce the pigment that provides some protection against burning. In contrast, burning can occur in a few hours in the sun. Development of a tan takes several days and cannot be rushed. In addition, sun exposure causes a thickening of the top epidermal layer of the skin and this increases your resistance to burning.