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Skin analysis service

EX VIVO Study Contract Services

Ex vivo tests on human skin tissues to analyze the effects of your products (performed by Laboratoire BIO-EC, France).

There are different approaches to assessing functional cosmetics. One is “morphological evaluation” typically using photography, and another is “histological evaluation” based on tests using living cells and tissues.


Our “EX VIVO Study” services provide highly reproducible results of histological evaluation using live tissues from the human skin

Distinguish features of Ex vivo tests on human skin tissues
  • These are new testing services to evaluate skin functions refined through over 10 years of research and development by Laboratoire BIO-EC in France.

  • The study using explanted human skin tissues (ex vivo tests) enables us to assess reactions under a condition extremely similar to that in actual human skin (in vivo tests).

  • The changes occurring in the skin (increases in collagen and mucopolysaccharide, loss of emollient substances, decrease in damaged cells, etc.) can be confirmed on the levels of tissues and cells, and the test results can be judged by imaging analysis and numerical values.


Live human skin tissues

The EX VIVO Study of Laboratoire BIO-EC is performed using human skin tissues provided by medical institutions. Laboratoire BIO-EC developed techniques to keep these human skin tissues alive for a certain period based on the expertise of the founding members and the research experience accumulated for 10 years since its establishment.

Histological evaluation and morphological evaluation

An approach to assessing the actions of functional cosmetics on the skin is morphological evaluation using photography and visual inspection. The test protocols specified in the Cosmetic Function Evaluation Guidelines (Japanese Cosmetic Science Society), for example, have been developed for the purpose of standardizing morphological evaluation, such as the judgment on anti-wrinkle performance using photography and the assessment of whitening performance using digital image analysis.

In contrast, the EX VIVO Study of Laboratoire BIO-EC offers histological evaluation involving staining of skin tissues and image analysis. This enables us to understand what effects are taking place how much in the skin. The results can be used as a support to morphological evaluation based on observation of the skin surface, helping the pursuit of functionality of your products.

  • Morphological evaluation (photography, diagnosis by dermatologist, etc.)=Improvement on the skin surface (examples: reduction of wrinkles, improvement of stains, etc.)

  • Histological evaluation (EX VIVO Study)=Improvement within the skin (examples: increase in collagen, inactivation of melanocytes, etc.)


Testing purpose
  • Functional evaluation of cosmetics
  • Evaluation and screening of functional ingredient materials (for cosmetics/foods)
  • Functional evaluation of foods designed for beautiful skin

Custom evaluation systems can be designed to meet your purposes and requests based on the vast store of testing know-how.

  • Functionality/safety in continuous use

  • Evaluation in specified skin tissues (epidermis, epidermis + dermis, subcutaneous adipose tissues, scalp and hair, etc.)

  • Evaluation under specified conditions (inflammatory/ultraviolet/oxidative stress, for improvement/preventive purpose, etc.)

Information of the testing company

BIO-EC Laboratoires

  • Established in 1998.

  • Founded by Elian Lati, PhD

  • Field of business: Contract in vitro/ex vivo studies relating to the efficacy/safety of cosmetic products and ingredient materials.

  • Notable clients: major international corporations operating under renowned cosmetic/fashion brands.

Major achievements
  • 2004: Poster presentation at the 34th annual meeting of European Society for Dermatological Research (ESDR) in Vienna (Joint study with Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy (Christian Dior)).

  • 2005: Poster presentation at the 35th annual meeting of European Society for Dermatological Research (ESDR) in Berlin (Joint study with Société Sederma).

  • 2005: International Journal of Cosmetic Science Vol. 27 (publication of 5 papers).

  • 2005: Restoration of stratum corneum with nacre lipids (joint study with CNRS (the French National Center for Scientific Research)).

  • 2006: Human keratinocyte radiosensitivity is linked to redox modulation. Journal of Dermatological Science (2006) 41, 55-65 (joint study with IRSN (the French Radioprotection and Nuclear Safety Institute) and CEA (the French Atomic & Alternative Energies Commission)).

  • PhD in Pharmacology (analytical chemistry)
  • Representative Director and Manager of R&D Department, Laboratoire BIO-EC
  • Engaged in the development of plant ceramides for cosmetic use.
Major theses
  • Inhibition of human neutrophil elastase by wheat ceramides (Intl. J. of Cosmetic Science, 1995)

  • The dual pharmacological actions of Cu/Zn SOD: Antioxidant pathways and the role of NO (J. Clin. Invest., 1998)

  • The skin moisturizing action of oral wheat ceramides (Fragrance Journal, January 1995, pp. 81-89).
  • etc.

  • Technical Officer, Histological Evaluation Expert, BIO-EC

  • After working for Laboratoire ROC (a Johnson & Johnson group company) in the fields of animal testing and histological evaluation for over 20 years, he joined BIO-EC as a founding member.

Data Concerning EX VIVO Study Services

Evaluation of anti-aging effect

Analysis of age-related changes in skin tissues focusing on specific substances and structural parts

Histological changes in the epidermis

Evaluation of the sample’s activity to improve the skin barrier function

Thinning of the epidermis causes impairment of the skin barrier function, leading to increased susceptibility to damage.

Thickening of the epidermis (pale red) is demonstrated.

Changes in type IV collagen profile

Evaluation of the sample’s activity to enhance skin elasticity (collagen production)

It occurs in the dermis, the layer beneath the epidermis, and works as the basic substance supporting skin elasticity.

We can confirm an increase in the density of type IV collagen (green fluorescence).

Changes in glycosaminoglycan (mucopolysaccharide) profile

Evaluation of the sample’s activity to improve elasticity and moisture retention (increase in GAG)

These substances, including hyaluronic acid and chondroitin, are vital to maintaining elasticity and moisture in the dermis.

The layer containing glycosaminoglycan (dark purple) has become thicker and denser.

Evaluation of moisturizing effect

Observation of effects on various skin components and structures involved in a loss of skin moisturizing capacity.

Changes in filaggrin (precursor of NMF) profile

Evaluation of the sample’s moisturizing effect

Moisturizing substance on the epidermis

Filaggrin (green) has become denser and thicker.

Changes in aquaporin 3 profile

Evaluation of the sample’s moisturizing effect

Aquaporin molecules in skin cells act as water channels for moisture retention.

Aquaporin 3 (green) can be seen around cells (red).

Evaluation of whitening effect

Observation of phenomena that reduce whiteness

Visualization of melanocytes

Evaluation of the sample’s whitening effect

Ultraviolet rays and other factors activate melanocytes to increase pigment production.

We can confirm the presence of activated melanocytes (purple) is demonstrated.

Melanin formation

Evaluation of the sample’s whitening effect

Activated melanocytes produce melanin, leading to dark and cloudy complexion.

We can confirm the presence of melanin (black) produced by melanocytes.

Evaluation of UV protection effect

Evaluation of UV-induced damage related to skin deterioration

Inflammatory sunburn cells

Evaluation of effect on UV-induced erythema, tingling pain, etc.

Ultraviolet rays incite inflammatory reactions in skin cells, potentially producing erythema and pain.

We can confirm the presence of inflammatory sunburn cells (dark purple).

p53 (a cancer-related gene)

Evaluation of the protective effect against UV-induced gene mutation

Ultraviolet rays cause mutation of a gene (p53) involved in cancer development.

We can confirm the presence of cells expressing p53 mutants (brown).

DNA damage (thymidine dimers)

Evaluation of the protective effect against UV-induced DNA damage

Ultraviolet rays cause various types of damage to DNA.

We can confirm the presence of cells with DNA damage (thymidine dimer formation) (brown).

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