Lisa DeLouise, Ph.D., M.P.D., associate professor of Dermatology, has received two Pilot Grants from the CTSI, each of which helped to support a line of research that blossomed into much more. She shared her experiences with CTSI Stories.
The first one I got was in 2007, and it was for nanoparticle skin research. I look at cosmetic products to see if they have efficacy and any unintended toxicity issues, and back in 2006, I got involved in the question of whether nanoparticles that are increasingly formulated into various topical cosmetic products have any of these side effects. In sunscreens, for example, there are ingredients that can have unintended biological consequences, so I was looking at a couple compounds used in sunscreens -- titanium oxide and zinc oxide -- which absorb UV light so your skin is protected. When these compounds were first used, they were approved by the FDA at the micron level -- so, relatively speaking, the particles were too large to seep through skin.