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Lookup NU author(s): Professor Mark Birch-Machin,
Dr Jennifer Latimer
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The skin is regularly exposed to the harmful effects of sunlight, such as ultraviolet radiation (UVR), which leads to ageing effects as well as clinical precancerous lesions and skin cancer. The accumulation of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) damage has been strongly associated as an underlying cause of the general ageing process in tissues and mtDNA damage has been associated with cancer development in many tissues including human skin. This scenario is linked to the key roles of mitochondrial function and mtDNA both in terms of energy production and also oxidative stress production as well as a mediator of apoptosis. We and others have pioneered the use of mtDNA damage as a highly sensitive biomarker of UVR exposure and oxidative stress in human skin; furthermore, ageing-dependent mtDNA mutations can be accelerated by exposure to sunlight. In addition, this review will also highlight useful applications of mtDNA as a biomarker of UVR-induced oxidative stress including effects of antioxidants.
Author(s): Birch-Machin MA, Russell EV, Latimer JA
Publication type: Review
Publication status: Published
Journal: British Journal of Dermatology
Issue: Suppl. 2
Print publication date: 01/07/2013
ISSN (print): 0007-0963
ISSN (electronic): 1365-2133