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OSU research finds skin from a certain Pacific fish could help keep us looking young

The Pacific whiting, also called the North Pacific hake, is local to waters off the coast of Oregon. And it could soon be part of your skincare regimen.

CORVALLIS, Ore. — We all have heard the benefits of having seafood in our diets, but now a certain type of Pacific Northwest fish might help keep us looking younger. New research from Oregon State University (OSU) is showing how the Pacific whiting, also called the North Pacific hake, could be beneficial for our skin

“We are aiming to see if there were any potential benefit to the Pacific whiting skin, particularly the gelatin,” said OSU researcher Jung Kwon.

The results of Kwon's research have shown that skin from the fish can prevent our skin from wrinkling due to sun exposure, she says — all due to the way that gelatin sourced from the Pacific whiting's skin can interact with ultraviolet radiation.

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Gelatin is a type of protein that can be found in the skin of animals like fish. Kwon and her team took the skin from these fish and found they help reactivate certain levels of collagen.

“By the end of the process we get a powdered form of this gelatin and that can be mixed in with the cell,” Kwon said.

So far this is what researchers have found with the Pacific whiting skin, according to an OSU press release: the gelatin reactivated to a certain level the collagen synthesis pathway that had been suppressed by UV radiation, prevented activation to a certain level of the collagen degradation pathway that had been accelerated by UV radiation and promoted additional anti-oxidant activity. Antioxidants are substances that can prevent or slow damage to cells.

OSU's research found that the gelatin also promoted additional anti-inflammatory effects.

Now Kwon says she’s looking into the next steps of her research. She said at this point, she doesn’t know exactly yet if this will have the same kind of benefit as if you were to eat the fish, or if it’ll work by applying a topical solution on your skin like a lotion.

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