The international research team designed new molecules that, besides inhibiting the BACH1 protein, activate the NRF2 protein. This protein controls the way that certain genes are expressed. These specific genes help to protect cells against oxidative stress such as HMOX1, the one that encodes heme oxygenase 1, but also many others that work independently from BACH1.
This action mechanism is very interesting for skin disease treatments such as atopic dermatitis and epidermolysis bullosa, a very rare disease on which there is little research. What is more, this molecule has great potential to be used in cosmetics due to its antioxidant properties.
In addition to the University of Dundee in Scotland and the University of Cordoba, the companies Emerald Health Biotechnology, in the field of developing new medicine, and Innohealth Madrid (acquired by Evonik Industries AG), which specializes in dermo-cosmetics made from natural ingredients, have also collaborated on this research. Both companies were set up stemming from the BIO-304 research group at the University of Cordoba.