Face cream ‘made from breast milk could cure teenage acne’, study claims
A face cream that is made from breast milk and coconut oil could cure teenage acne, a study has claimed. American scientists found that a component of mother’s milk, called lauric acid, which also is found in coconut oil, had acne-fighting qualities.
They found the new treatment has no side effects because it comes from natural products unlike current available treatments which can cause redness and burning.
Researchers behind the project hope to begin human trials on a new face cream soon that could tackle the problem that hits millions of teenagers every year.
They have been able to avoid some of the more arduous restrictions to get approval for testing because the product will be created from natural or already approved ingredients.
Dissaya Pornpattananangkul, a bioengineering postgraduate student from the University of California made the discovery that lauric acid could save face for millions of teenagers around the world.
She described the findings as exciting which could give hope to millions of teenagers.
“It’s a good feeling to know that I have a chance to develop a drug that could help people with acne,” she said
“Common acne afflicts more than 85 per cent of teenagers and over 40 million people in the United States; and current treatments have undesirable side effects including redness and burning.
“Lauric-acid-based treatments could avoid these side effects.”
Miss Pornpattananangkul also developed a sophisticated “smart delivery system” for the lauric acid to be effective.
She was able to bind the acid with “gold nanoparticles” which stops the lauric acid from joining together while in cream form and then allows it to separate quickly when applied to the skin.
“The new smart delivery system includes gold nanoparticles attached to surfaces of lauric-acid-filled nano-bombs,” she said.
“The gold nanoparticles keep the nano-bombs or liposomes from fusing together.
“The gold nanoparticles also help the liposomes locate acne-causing bacteria based on the skin microenvironment, including pH.”
Professor Liangfang Zhang, from the university’s Jacobs School of Engineering, who also helped with the research, said the new methods targeted acne, reducing the risk of side effects.
“Precisely controlled nanoscale delivery of drugs that are applied topically to the skin could significantly improve the treatment of skin bacterial infections,” he said.
“By delivering drugs directly to the bacteria of interest, we hope to boost antimicrobial efficacy and minimise off-target adverse effects.
“All building blocks of the nano-bombs are either natural products or have been approved for clinical use, which means these nano-bombs are likely to be tested on humans in the near future.”
Ms Pornpattananangkul, originally from Thailand, said that it’s just a coincidence that her research involves a natural product produced by coconuts a staple of Thai cuisine.
She presented her work on this experimental acne-drug-delivery system at Research Expo, the annual research conference of the University of California San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering on April 15.