Listed in Issue 86


GOLLNICK and SIEBENWIRTH, University Clinic of Dermatology and Venereology, Otto-von-Guericke University, Magdeburg, Germany,, have found that beta-carotene plasma levels and content in the oral mucosal epithelium is skin-type associated.


Beta-carotene is one of the important antioxidants and particularly acts to protect the skin against UV radiation damage . The study was designed to measure if differences in beta-carotene in peripheral blood and in the oral mucosa are related to skin types I to IV (according to Fitzpatrick).


174 men and women were studied for beta-carotene plasma levels . Of these, 63 healthy volunteers with skin types I – IV were studied with regard to beta-carotene plasma levels and beta-carotene content in the oral mucosa .


Plasma levels were 0.1565 micromol/l in skin type I and increased through 0.2989 in type II and 0.5457 in type III to 1.221 micromol/l in type IV . A similar skin-type dependent increase in beta-carotene could be measured in the oral mucosa. Smokers had significantly lower levels of beta-carotene in plasma and oral mucosa as compared to non-smokers. Skin cancer patients also showed lower beta-carotene levels in both tissues.


The levels of beta-carotene in blood plasma and in oral mucosal cells are strongly associated with skin type . It is an interesting question whether these differences are genetically controlled .


Gollnick HPM, Siebenwirth C, et al. Beta-carotene plasma levels and content in oral mucosal epithelium is skin type associated. Skin Pharmacology and Applied Skin Physiology 15 (5): 360-366, Sep 2002.

ICAN Skyscraper

Scientific and Medical Network 2

Cycle Around the World for Charity 2023

Climb Mount Kilimanjaro Charity 2023

Cycle from Milan to Venice for Regain 2023

top of the page