OBJECTIVES: Polypodium leucotomos extract is a commonly used systemic photoprotective agent. In an exploratory fashion, the current study aimed to compare the effects of oral supplementation with a fixed Polypodium leucotomos/pomegranate combination (PPmix®) versus Polypodium leucotomos alone (Fernblock®) on skin biophysical parameters of Caucasian adults.
METHODS: Forty healthy adult volunteers (20 males and 20 females; mean age: 37.2±5.5 years) were randomized in a 1:1 fashion to a fixed Polypodium leucotomos/pomegranate combination (480 mg/day; n=20) or Polypodium leucotomos alone (480 mg/day; n=20) for 3 months. Six skin biophysical parameters (skin sebum content, hydration, transepidermal water loss [TEWL], erythema index, melanin index, and elasticity) were measured at baseline and after 3 months by personnel blinded to participant allocation.
RESULTS: At the end of the study, hydration and elasticity were significantly improved and TEWL was reduced in both groups, without significant intergroup differences. The erythema index was decreased by both treatments, although the fixed Polypodium leucotomos/pomegranate combination was significantly more effective. Finally, melanin index and skin sebum content were reduced by the fixed Polypodium leucotomos/pomegranate combination, whereas Polypodium leucotomos alone did not affect them.
CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that a fixed Polypodium leucotomos/pomegranate combination provides a greater improvement of skin biophysical parameters compared to Polypodium leucotomos alone in adult Caucasians. Our findings may have implications for optimizing systemic skin photoprotection and beautification strategies.