BACKGROUND: Transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β) is a major regulator of the synthesis of extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins in human skin as it stimulates fibroblast proliferation and collagen production. Perturbed TGF-β expression may play a key role in the pathogenesis of skin aging.
OBJECTIVES: This study was conducted to objectively evaluate the effects of different modalities of non-invasive facial rejuvenation on TGF-β expression and to correlate its level with that of newly synthesized collagen.
METHODS: A total of 36 patients with Fitzpatrick skin types III and IV were divided into six groups. Each group of six patients was subjected to a different non-invasive modality for the treatment of skin aging, including radiofrequency (RF), Nd:YAG 1320-nm laser and Er:YAG 2940-nm laser mini-peels, intense pulsed light (IPL), mesotherapy injection, and electro-optical synergy (ELOS). Skin biopsies were obtained before treatment, at the end of treatment, and at three months post-treatment. In addition, biopsies were obtained from 30 control subjects. Levels of TGF-β were quantitatively evaluated using computerized image analysis of immunostained sections.
RESULTS: The expression of TGF-β was statistically significantly increased (P 0.05) were observed in TGF-β level in response to IPL or mesotherapy treatments in comparison with baseline. The level of TGF-β was positively correlated (P
CONCLUSIONS: Radiofrequency, ELOS, and Nd:YAG 1320-nm laser and Er:YAG 2940-nm laser mini-peels resulted in an increase in TGF-β expression, which may mediate the effects of these modalities in enhancing dermal collagen expression through the activation of fibroblasts and thereby reverse the photoaging of skin.
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