Maple Leaf Extract Found to Exhibit Anti-Ageing Effects

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Researchers extracted content of maple leaves to formulate powder that could be incorporated in skincare products to prevent wrinkles

Increasing age results into various physical changes, with increasing age an enzyme in skin called as elastase breaks down the elasticity-maintaining protein elastin, leading to formation of wrinkles. Recent study conducted by team from the University of Rhode Island developed a natural product, which utilizes content of maple leaves for anti-ageing benefits.

The team was focused on determining if leaf extracts from red maple trees could block elastase activity. Researchers were specifically examining compound called glucitol-core-containing gallotannins (GCGs). In both test tube experiments and computer models, it was found that GCGs containing multiple galloyl groups (which are a type of phenolic group) were particularly effective at doing so – much more so than ones containing a single galloyl group. As a side benefit, these same compounds may also be able to protect skin against inflammation and lighten unwanted dark spots.

On the basis of research, the team developed patented formulation, which incorporates GCGs obtained from summer and fall maple leaves and maple sap. Named Maplifa, it has been licensed to Indiana-based botanical extracts supplier Verdure Sciences, with an aim to incorporating it into cosmetics or perhaps dietary supplements. “You could imagine that these extracts might tighten up human skin like a plant-based Botox, though they would be a topical application, not an injected toxin,” said study leader, Dr. Navindra P. Seeram.

Effectivity of the maple extract on human skin will provide natural alternative to anti-ageing creams available in market along with providing added source of income to maple farmers. The research is being presented at the 256th National Meeting and Exposition of the American Chemical Society in August 2018.

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