Dipeptide collagen intake improves skin hydration and reduces peeling – Nongshim 12-week study

By Tingmin Koe

- Last updated on GMT

The supplementation of a dipeptide collagen has been shown to improve skin hydration, according to a 12-week South Korean RCT.  ©Getty Images
The supplementation of a dipeptide collagen has been shown to improve skin hydration, according to a 12-week South Korean RCT. ©Getty Images

Related tags Collagen South korea Nongshim

The supplementation of dipeptide collagen for 12 weeks has been shown to improve skin hydration and reduce skin peeling among women aged 30 to 60, says findings from South Korean food company Nongshim.

Famous for its ramen, Nongshim also produces collagen tablet supplements marketed as Derma Collagen.

In its findings published in Food & Function, ​researchers from the company, alongside skin centre research firm Corederm, Mariedm, and Dongguk University took a closer look on dipeptide collagen supplementation and its effects on skin.

One major finding was that low molecular weight bioactive peptides present in the dipeptides Gly-Pro (glycine- prolyl) and Pro-Hyp (prolyl-hydroxyproline), could improve skin hydration and reduce skin peeling.

This is based on a 12-week double-blind, randomized, and placebo-controlled clinical trial involving 112 women aged 30 to 60 years old.

These women faced issues such as dry facial skin, with water content at 49 and below, as well as crow’s feet or wrinkles around their eyes.

Randomised into two groups, the women from the intervention group took in a 3,300mg tablet containing 1,650mg of the dipeptides once per day, while others took the placebo.

Sourced from the tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus​) fish scales, the dipeptides were produced by enzymatically breaking the fish scales.

“Because collagen is a large-size protein with a high molecular weight of about 300 kDa, there is an ongoing controversy over its absorption rate.

“The latest trend in related research has thus been to develop functional materials with collagen peptides whose bioavailability has been enhanced by reducing their molecular weight using enzymatic hydrolysis,”​ the researchers said on the reasons for using dipeptides.

During the trial, the participants were advised to stick to their daily skincare routine, dietary habits and not to undergo dermatological procedures.

Their skin moisture, trans-epidermal water loss (TEWL), skin desquamation – or the peeling of skin, skin wrinkling, and skin elasticity were measured.

Skin hydration and TEWL

The intervention group reported more significant improvement in skin hydration and reduction in skin peeling at four, eight, and 12 weeks after the start of supplementation. 

Their facial skin hydration, measured using a corneometer, was up from the baseline level of 36.29 to 38.93 four weeks after supplementation, and further increased to 40.97 and 42.92 at eight- and 12-weeks post-supplementation.

As for the placebo group, their facial skin hydration stayed at between 38.80 and 39.80 during the study.

However, skin hydration on the forearm did not show a significant difference between the groups.

In addition, there was also no significant difference in TEWL between the two groups.

Skin peeling

On the other hand, the intervention group also reported a reduction in skin peeling in the forearm by the end of the study.

There was a 8.74-fold improvement in skin peeling as compared to the placebo at four weeks after the intervention.

This reached a peak at eight weeks after the study, with a 19.82-fold improvement before the extend of improvement narrowed to 5.19-fold when the study was completed. 

While improvements in facial skin peeling were also reported in the intervention group, the improvement was not statistically significant when compared to the placebo.

“The improved skin hydration parameters that we investigated following the administration of CPNS may therefore have affected the decrease in skin desquamation and increase in skin elasticity that we observed,” ​said the researchers.

Which dipeptide is better?

Citing an earlier animal study​, the researchers said that after the intake of hydrolysed collagen, the plasma concentration of dipeptide forms Gly-Pro and Pro-Hyp, the two dipeptides used in this study, had increased.

“Particularly, the Gly-Pro dipeptide is absorbed considerably faster than other CPNS-originated bioactive peptides such as Gly-Pro-Hyp tripeptide and Pro-Hyp dipeptide.

“According to Yamamoto et al.​, Gly-Pro detected a notably faster Tmax than the other bioactive peptides of collagen hydrolysate, such as Pro-Ala, Pro-Hyp, Gly-Pro-Ala, and Gly-Pro-Hyp with intraperitoneal administration.”

A reason is because of the dipeptide’s smaller molecular weight, allowing it to enter the bloodstream and distributed to the organs.

“These findings indicate that the rapid absorption of the Gly-Pro dipeptide occurs in the bloodstream and that it is promptly distributed to the organs because of the much smaller size of Gly-Pro compared to other peptides.

“The cosmetic functional food market has been expanding rapidly, and CPNS (collagen peptide) may be used as a safe, economical, and efficient substance for nutraceutical foods, to ameliorate skin wrinkling, hydration, desquamation, and elasticity.

“Synthetically, these results suggest that Gly-Pro- and Pro-Hyp-containing CPNS may be an alternative supplement for anti-photoaging in the nutraceutical or nutricosmetic industry,” ​the researchers concluded.


Source: Food & Function

Oral intake of collagen peptide NS improves hydration, elasticity, desquamation, and wrinkling in human skin: a randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled study

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1039/D2FO02958H

Authors: Miyeong Lee et al

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