Outstanding Contribution by Dr. Charareh Pourzand at Polyphenols Applications 2023

Charareh Winner 1 Charareh Winner 2

The Polyphenols Applications 2023 committee acknowledges Dr. Charareh Pourzand from the University of Bath, UK, for her exemplary achievement in securing the Best Short Oral Presentation Award.

In her presentation titled "Hydroxycinnamic Acid Derivatives as Dual-Action Antioxidants and Iron Chelators for Shielding Skin Cells from UVA Photodamage", Dr. Pourzand provided a comprehensive overview of her research findings. Among the multiple hydroxycinnamic acid derivatives studied, trans-cinnamic acid (TCA) emerged as particularly potent in its photoprotective efficacy against UVA in skin cells. This was attributed to its pronounced capability to reduce both basal and UVA-induced increase in intracellular labile iron levels. Dr. Pourzand elaborated on the dual mechanistic role of hydroxycinnamic derivatives, with a notable emphasis on TCA, in counteracting UVA-induced damage in skin cells.

In general, Dr. Pourzand's Research on UVA photobiology specially in relation to skin photoaging has revealed that UVA component of sunlight has a dual damaging effect on skin cells. In one hand it generates harmful reactive oxygen species (ROS) and on the other hand it promotes the release of harmful free iron that acts as a catalyst to exacerbate the damaging effect of ROS, leading to irreversible skin photodamage in the form of wrinkling, sagging, etc .

Dr. Pourzand stated: "To counteract this dual effect of UVA, we are in process of identifying natural compounds based on polyphenols that can not only neutralise the UVA-induced ROS but also mop the free iron released by UVA. Since the properties and the concentration of such polyphenols can significantly change in different seasons or locations, our future research is concentrated on designing 'bio-inspired' molecules that are more stable than their natural counterparts but still maintain their dual functions. Such bifunctional compounds  can then be added as photo-protectants into sunscreen formulations for a more robust protection against UVA photodamge exerted by sunlight".    

Such advancements in the field of skin photoprotection are of immense importance, and the Polyphenols Applications 2023 team, along with the broader scientific community, recognizes and appreciates Dr. Pourzand's significant contribution.

Polyphenols Applications 2023 Congress
September 28-29, 2023 - Malta
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