Photosensitized Methyl Paraben Induces Apoptosis Via Caspase Dependent Pathway Under Ambient UVB Exposure in Human Skin Cells


A 2017 study summary from Food and Chemical Toxicology (vol. 108, pt. A, p.171) examining ultraviolet B light on a methyl paraben treated human cell line. The authors conclude that photosensitized methyl paraben does cause forms of skin damage including lipid peroxidation, intracellular ROS generation and disrupted mitochondrial membrane integrity and should be replaced by other photosafe preservatives.

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Methyl paraben (MP), is a widely used preservative in pharmaceutical, food and cosmetic products. Its molecular mechanism under ambient ultraviolet radiation is not well understood.

We investigated photosensitizing mechanism of MP under ambient UVB (0.6 mW/cm ) intensity. MP showed dose dependent decrease in cell viability of human keratinocyte cell line (HaCaT) by MTT and NRU assays.

Photosensitized MP (25 μg/ml) significantly enhanced lipid peroxidation, intracellular ROS generation and disrupted mitochondrial membrane integrity. MP induced loss of lysosomal membrane integrity and endoplasmic reticulum (ER) mediated stress evident from Ca release...MP causes deleterious effects and its long term exposure to human skin may promote skin diseases. Therefore, MP should be replaced by other photosafe preservatives for humans.

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