A high level of safety is required for cosmetics and other products that are applied directly to the skin. Therefore, when developing new raw materials, we must evaluate the safety at every development stage. Furthermore, in the case of active ingredients, there is a need to evaluate the efficacy.
At Cosmos Technical Center, we evaluate the efficacy and safety of our products as well as many other raw materials and active ingredients. As a method of screening and mechanism analysis, we use "cultured human-derived cells" and "three-dimensional reconstructed human skin models".Furthermore, we conduct clinical tests using human volunteers to assess actual efficacy.
In addition, as an alternative to animal testing, we are actively using reconstructed human skin models and cultured cells in our safety evaluation.
In vitro efficacy evaluation
"In vitro evaluation" is performed using cultured human-derived cells (keratinocytes, melanocytes, and fibroblasts,etc).
In the efficacy evaluation, we can evaluate the "increase of collagen synthesis" and "suppression of melanin production" etc. in vitro. Furthermore, in vitro efficacy evaluation is used to screen for the best ingredients at the development stage.
In vitro efficacy evaluation on Transdermal absorption
Generally, in an "in vitro evaluation" with cultured monolayer cells, the stratum corneum barrier of human skin is not taken into consideration. For this reason, in our evaluation, we test first the efficacy of a cosmetic ingredient in vitro. Then, we use three-dimensional reconstructed human skin models to evaluate Transdermal absorption mechanism.
Therefore, we can evaluate qualitatively and quantitatively the penetration of active ingredients through the stratum corneum. Even using the same ingredients and composition, the skin penetration ability differs according to the type of formulations. We perform the efficacy evaluation test with three-dimensional reconstructed human skin models in order to develop effective and safe formulations.
In vitro safety evaluation
Currently in Europe, for the safety evaluation of cosmetics, animal testing has been prohibited by law due to ethics and concern for animal welfare. As a company policy, we are actively using reconstructed human skin models and cultured cells in our evaluation as an alternative to animal testing.
We actively use these alternative methods to conduct multifaceted evaluations for skin irritation and skin sensitization. For ingredients and formulations which do not meet our criteria, we will continue to improve it until we reach a satisfactory quality.
Clinical test (in vivo)
When developing active ingredients, efficacy evaluations using human volunteers are indispensable. However, before evaluating the efficacy on humans, the active ingredients must be cleared for efficacy and safety in vitro.
We can conduct a total test from efficacy and safety evaluations using cultured cells "in vitro" to clinical tests "in vivo". As an example, we can test the efficacy of an active ingredient by using human volunteers. (Wrinkle reduction, moisturizing effect, brightening effect etc.)