Peptides are naturally occurring short chains of amino acids that bind together to make proteins. Certain copper-derived peptides are hypothesized by researchers to potentially induce the formation of a multitude of protein bodies such as collagen, and various fibers, among others.
Elastin fiber is just one of the many types of fiber that have been theorized to be formed through peptide exposure, contributing to the extracellular matrix of skin. Naturally occurring, endogenous peptides comprise essential components to maintaining skin cell function and cell development. Scientists suggest that loss of certain integral proteins such as elastin and collagen steepens over time, and certain peptide releases may induce a signal to increase protein production.
Research in Copper Peptides
Copper proteins and naturally occurring peptides aim to assemble the building blocks necessary for a structurally sound and functional extracellular matrix in the skin, making copper peptides a potentially large focus in dermatological research. Small copper peptides have indeed been studied for their potential to induce tissue repair and remodeling, with research hypotheses suggesting downstream impacts spanning anti-inflammatory, and anti-antioxidant, and DNA repair potential. These copper peptides have attracted scientific notice for their purported potential to adjust gene expression. GHK-Cu is one such copper peptide and its mechanism of action has been widely speculated, as elucidated below.
GHK-Cu is a copper peptide (tripeptide Glycyl-L-histidyl-L-lysine), a naturally occurring, small, copper-binding peptide complex that can be found primarily in plasma. According to a study in 2018, GHK-Cu was originally discovered and studied in 1973, and it has been suggested to exhibit an abundance of potential downstream impacts, some of which may include necessary cell restructuring for tissue repair, and elevated generation of growth factors and antioxidant enzyme activity.
This copper peptide has also been suggested to stimulate collagen and elastin synthesis, stimulate hair follicle development, reduce scarring, and potentially improve the reconstruction of gastric and epidermal linings. To further emphasize the significance of GHK-Cu peptide, research has also suggested that this particular peptide may possibly mitigate cancer cell proliferation, inflammation of tissues, and possibly exhibit antioxidant properties. Another study released in 2018 reports that GHK may potentially mitigate or block the impacts of UV radiation. However endogenous GHK-Cu declines naturally over time.
Buffet, and GHK-Cu Peptides
A “buffet” is a serum of peptide solution, amino acids, and hyaluronic acid. This mixture combines a wide variety of researched compounds aimed to target instances of age-related physiological decline. In one study, researchers combined buffet with a 1% copper peptide solution and reported results that suggested the addition of the peptide may have induced an increase in hydration retention and protein production as compared to buffet exposure in the control group.
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