Sunlight causes sunburns, photoaging, photosensitivity, age spots and skin cancer. These risks can be significantly reduced by use of sunscreen. Nowadays a great number of commercially produced sunscreens contain chemical compounds with a broad-spectrum ultraviolet coverage, such as oxybenzone and octinoxate, which are extremely toxic to the
environment. Every year around 14,000 tons of sunscreen is washed into the oceans and seas, resulting in a dramatic increase of the toxicity level, causing a variety of pathologies to corals. To prevent this we can use natural UV protection compounds, such as mycosporine-like amino acids.
Our team is trying to produce MAA-s in yeast, using the genes from two different cyanobacterial species. We are expecting to obtain shinorine and porphyra-334(MAAs). They work not only as sunscreen but also are able to protect skin from photoaging, have the anti-inflammatory effect and antioxidant activity and even could be considered as anti-cancer agents. We are also planning to use the obtained yeast extract in our product, as it helps to protect, moisturize and sooth the skin. We hope that by combining this with ingredients, we will get a product with the wide spectrum of action.