Fucoidan is a generic name for a special chemical compound contained in brown seaweeds. This glutinous substance where fucoidan is found is needed by the seaweeds themselves for there survival. During the low tide some seaweeds become exposed to harsh conditons and in order for them to survive the direct contact with air and sun, they ooze this glutinous substance, which is rich in fucoidan.
Fucoidan is a fiber rich substance extracted from brown seaweed which belongs to a class of fucose-enriched sulphated polysaccharides.
Due to anti-inflammatory and procollagen synthesis-stimulating properties, fucoidan holds promise for use healing burns, alleviating allergic reactions, and treating atopic dermatitis. Additionally, fucoidan can increase dermal fibroblast migration and their rate of proliferation. In a number of experimental studies, fucoidan has been shown to successfully reduce the appearance of aging and to promote hair regeneration.
Fucoidan solutions are known to stimulate dermal fibroblast proliferation. As dermal fibroblasts are what produce the collagen in skin, a component which makes up about 70% of the extracellular matrix. This increases the numbers of cells that make the skin more supple skin, reduce appearance of wrinkles, and decrease thickness of the epidermal layer. Fucoidan is quite potent in combination with retinol and/or Tetrahexyl ascorbate in wound healing and anti-aging remedies.
It helps whiten the skin through its potent anti-tyrosinase activity. Fucoidan is known to protect skin from UV radiation and inhibit the production of melanin in skin that has already been exposed to the sun’s rays.
Other benefits include
- Scar tissue care
- Moisturizing and hydration
- Increase skin elasticity
- Sun damage repair
- Anti-androgenetic alopecia
MECHANISMS OF ACTION
- speeds up skin healing, as in case of a sunburn, by increasing the expression of wound-healing genes. For example, one in-vitro assay in this same study showed the following. After 4 hours of applying wakame extract the expression of wound-healing genes doubled compared to control
- slows down skin aging by inhibiting collagenase and elastase. These are enzymes that are involved in skin aging processes
- also slows down skin aging by blocking a process of glycation. This is when sugars – like glucose and fructose – react abnormally with proteins and lipids in your skin. This gives rise to harmful compounds making skin look tired
- contributes to youthfulness of the skin by doing the following. It reconstructs the epidermal layer of the skin by stimulating cell proliferation. Therefore it is said to be a potent new skin creator.
- It removes excess skin pigmentation by inhibiting enzyme tyrosinase which is essential in melanin formation. This enzyme is responsible for catalyzing production of melanin, a pigment that gives skin its color. If the enzyme is overactive it gives you brown spots and patches. This happens in young and older skin.