Lo stress ossidativo nelle patologie dermatologiche e nell’antiaging

Oxidative stress in dermatological pathologies and anti-aging

The prevention of aging and its consequences in the face of the increase in average lifespan have become an important aspect of everyone's life, both young and old. Therefore, facing the differences between physiological and chronological age, between active and passive lifestyle, between correct and unbalanced nutrition, between optimal stress management and overload, is an indissoluble requirement for acquiring knowledge and renewed clinical commitment.

A correct anti-aging strategy must aim to minimize the physiological process of physical and mental involution. Clinical studies have underlined how aging can be slowed down, allowing humans to recover a better quality of life, from a global approach perspective, which addresses all aspects: prevention and therapy, nutrition, nutraceuticals, health of the intestinal microbiota , correction of oxidative stress.

In particular, knowledge of the role of oxidative stress in premature aging is of great importance, documented by numerous studies and therefore an indispensable condition for the development of modern regenerative medicine. In fact, our genetic heritage does not contain any predetermined aging program: senescence and cell death are a direct consequence of irreversible oxidation and non-enzymatic glycosylation reactions that occur in the fundamental substance of the connective tissue, destructuring it.

In reality, the production of reactive species originating from oxygen and nitrogen is a defensive mechanism, for example against the bacteria responsible for infections, but if the amount of free radicals produced is excessive or too prolonged, the natural antioxidant systems are no longer able to carry out their removal. physiological modulation and the so-called oxidative stress occurs.

There are multiple causes (of oxidative stress): exposure to significant amounts of ionizing or UV radiation, hormonal alterations, infections, exposure to food additives, polluting environmental substances or those for recreational use (smoking, alcohol, drugs), inadequate nutrition, absent sporting activity or excessive, prolonged psycho-physical stress. The presence of a small quantity of free radicals is therefore physiological; when external factors and pathological conditions excessively increase their production or reduce antioxidant defenses, the normal state of equilibrium is broken.

The consequences of oxidative stress are ubiquitous and take the form of premature tissue aging up to actual pathological conditions (to date over a hundred diseases attributable to oxidative stress are known) caused by: alteration of membrane lipids which alters the permeability and intercellular exchanges, reduction of cellular energy, depletion of sugars, phosphates, enzymes and proteins, direct damage to DNA. One of the tissues most susceptible to oxidative insult is certainly the nervous one and among the various reasons we must mention the richness of phospholipids and polyunsaturated fatty acids of the neuronal membranes (ideal target for free radicals because they are easily oxidizable) and the poor antioxidant capacity of the neurons .

It therefore becomes essential to quantify both the effect of the biological oxidation suffered by our organism and the effectiveness of the natural antioxidant defenses. In 1994, an Italian researcher, Mauro Carratelli, developed a complete panel to evaluate the pro-oxidant status and antioxidant capacity in the biological fluids of human and animal organisms. In detail, the D-ROM TEST evaluates the total oxidizing capacity of the organism (normal values ​​250-300 Carr Units), while the BAP TEST measures its biological antioxidant potential (normal values ​​< 2200 µmoles/L). The test has predictive and prognostic value, is rapid in execution and reliable in results, allowing its remote repetition to monitor the results obtained through specific therapeutic programs.

Therapeutic programs which, personalized to the patient like a tailor-made suit, provide a 360-degree intervention, aimed at identifying and containing risk factors and suggesting a correct lifestyle and adequate medical and dermo-aesthetic therapies.

This topic, so important for the present and future of anti-aging medicine and still not sufficiently widespread as it deserves, will be one of the topics covered during the next Dermoaesthetics Course sponsored by the Association of Campanian Dermatologists (ADECA) , which took place on June 26, 2021 in Caserta. The course program was divided into 2 theoretical sessions in the morning and various live demos in the afternoon, one of which was totally dedicated to the in-depth study of oxidative stress and the fields of use of the machinery designed to measure it.

Dr. Elena Fiorentini

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