Let the sun shine in: Mechanisms and potential for therapeutics in skin photodamage

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


Photoaging and photocarcinogenesis are the two Janus faces of skin photodamage. Reactivity-based design of prototype agents that antagonize, modulate and reverse the chemistry of skin photodamage holds promise in delivering unprecedented therapeutic benefit. In contrast to structure-based approaches that use selective ligands to target macromolecules, reactivity-based drug discovery uses chemical reagents as therapeutics to target reactive chemical species as key mediators of skin photo-oxidative stress. The following classes of reactivity-based agents for skin photoprotection can be distinguished based on their mechanism of action: direct antagonists of photo-oxidative stress (sunscreens, quenchers of photo-excited states, antioxidants, redox modulators and glycation inhibitors) and skin photo-adaptation inducers (nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 [Nrf2] activators, heat-shock response inducers and metallothionein inducers).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)390-400
Number of pages11
JournalCurrent Opinion in Investigational Drugs
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2007


  • Antioxidant
  • Carbonyl scavenger
  • Glycation inhibitor
  • Heat-shock response inducer
  • Metal chelator
  • Photo-oxidative stress
  • Photoaging
  • Photodamage
  • Photoprotection
  • Skin photo-adaptation inducer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery


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