Can your skin help you avoid Alzheimer's?

Volume 5    |   Issue 36

Normally, I use these emails to tell you about how you can care for your skin. But today, I'd like to briefly deviate from that norm to tell you about how your skin may be able to care for you in the future.

Of course, your skin plays a vital role in your health every day by being your first line of defense against invaders and helping you literally keep yourself together. But according to research being conducted at the University of California, Irvine, it may have even more to offer as you age.

Many people are concerned about experiencing declines in cognitive functioning as they age, including diseases such as Alzheimer's. While Alzheimer's researchers have yet to discover a cure for this debilitating condition, the UC Irvine team has recently made an interesting discovery. By utilizing donated skin cells, the researchers were able to generate a key type of brain cell called microglia.

Microglia are vital to the brain's ability to preserve neural network function and help protect the brain from injury and disease. They help mediate inflammation and clean out dead cells and debris, both important functions when it comes to reducing the incidence of Alzheimer's. Previous studies have found that genes related to Alzheimer's risk may have a negative effect on microglia, so the ability to replace the affected cells could prove to be an important therapy.


The UC researchers were able to derive a type of cell called induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells from the skin cells and then program them to turn into cells very similar to microglial cells. Previously, Alzheimer's researchers have had to use mouse microglia in their studies. So the ability to create human microglial cells from the iPS cells will open up several new avenues for research, including investigating inflammation's role in the disease.

I'm excited about this line of research because as we all know, having good skin doesn't matter much if you don't have your health. Moreover, this study provides an important reminder that you can help protect both your skin and your health by keeping inflammation levels down in your body. You can do this by exercising, keeping stress to a minimum, and eating a healthy, antioxidant-rich diet. Using antioxidant-rich skincare products will help your skin fight off inflammation-causing free radicals as well.

This study also serves as a good reminder of the power of stem cells. While you won't find human stem cells in the < a href="">Système 41 line of products, you will find plant stem cells, specifically apple and grape. These are some of the most powerful anti-aging ingredients made even more effective as they are combined with additional natural antioxidants. Now, thanks to stem cells, you can enjoy both brains and beauty — naturally.

Your insider for better health,



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