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March 11, 2010

American Academy of Dermatology Annual Meeting Includes Presentation on Nanotechnology in Cosmetic Products

Lynn L. Bergeson

During the 68th annual meeting of the American Academy of Dermatology, on March 4, 2010, dermatologist Adnan Nasir, M.D., Ph.D., F.A.A.D., gave a presentation on nanotechnology and how nanoparticles may eventually be used in cosmetic products. According to Dr. Nasir, the cosmetic industry leads all other industries in the number of patents for nanoparticles, which have the potential to enhance sunscreens, shampoos, conditioners, lipsticks, eye shadows, moisturizers, deodorants, after-shave products, and perfumes.  Nanoparticles used in sunscreens increase protection and coverage on the skin, while being less visible than microparticles. In anti-aging products, nanotechnology may allow active ingredients to penetrate the top layer of the skin. Researchers are currently exploring nanoparticle treatments of conditions such as melanoma.  Dr. Nasir noted, however, that dermatologists are concerned about the potential health risks posed by nanotechnology, and “anxiously await” the Food and Drug Administration’s review of the safety of nanoparticles.