Chen, C.Y.-O., A. Smith, Y. Liu, P. Du, J.B. Blumberg, J. Garlick, 2017. Photoprotection by pistachio bioactives in a 3-dimensional human skin equivalent tissue model. International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition. Doi:10.1080/09637486.2017.1282437.
Reactive oxygen species (ROS) generated during ultraviolet (UV) light exposure can induce skin damage and aging. Antioxidants can provide protection against oxidative injury to skin via “quenching” ROS. Using a validated 3-dimensional (3D) human skin equivalent (HSE) tissue model that closely mimics human skin, we examined whether pistachio antioxidants could protect HSE against UVA-induced damage. Lutein and c-tocopherol are the predominant lipophilic antioxidants in pistachios; treatment with these compounds prior to UVA exposure protected against morphological changes to the epithelial and connective tissue compartments of HSE. Pistachio antioxidants preserved overall skin thickness and organization, as well as fibroblast morphology, in HSE exposed to UVA irradiation. However, this protection was not substantiated by the analysis of the proliferation of keratinocytes and apoptosis of fibroblasts. Additional studies are warranted to elucidate the basis of these discordant results and extend research into the potential role of pistachio bioactives promoting skin health.