Peptides are molecules made up of two or more amino acids linked together by the same peptide bonds found in proteins. Peptides are closely related to protein. In fact, when the number of amino acids is less than about 50, these molecules are called peptides while longer chains are called proteins. Peptides and proteins are present in every living cell and are responsible for many biochemical activities including acting in enzymes, hormones, antibiotics, etc.
Peptides are listed in many better skin care products, and they perform important functions in the skin. As people age, they lose collagen which results in sagging and wrinkled skin. In Southern areas like Arizona, too much sun exposure makes the damage happen more rapidly.
Since collagen is a protein composed of long chains of amino acids linked together by peptide bonds, peptides play an important role in replacing lost collagen. As collagen breaks down, the protein chains break up into smaller chains of peptides. The resulting peptide chains send signals to the body to produce more collagen.
Since peptides are small, they can penetrate the skin’s protective barriers. Applying peptides directly to the skin through good skin care products tricks the skin into thinking that it has lost collagen recently and needs to produce more.
Peptides break down easily, and it is important they are only used in products with ingredients that do not cause them to break down. In addition, while peptides are small enough to penetrate the skin, combining them with the wrong ingredients may hinder their ability to penetrate and work properly. This is why it is always important to use products which combine the right ingredients with the peptides.
Decapeptide contains ten amino acids.
Dipeptide contains two amino acids.
Hexapeptide contains six amino acids.
Nonapeptide contains nine amino acids.
Octapeptide contains eight amino acids.
Oligopeptide is a polypeptide less than 30-50 amino acids long.
Palmitoyl pentapeptide (Matrixyl) is the most commonly used signal peptide for skin care
Pentapeptide contains five amino acids.
Polypeptide is a single linear chain of amino acids.
Protein is made up of polypeptides of more than approximately 50 amino acids.
Ribosomal peptides are produced by synthesis.
Tetrapeptide contains four amino acids.
Tripeptide contains three amino acids.
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