Medically reperceived by Cynthia Cobb, DNP, APRN, WHNP-BC, FAANP — Written by James McIntosh on June 16, 2017

Collagen is the many numerous protein in the human body, found in the bones, muscles, skin, and also tendons.

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It is the substance that holds the body together. Collagen develops a scaffold to provide stamina and also structure.

Endogenous collagen is herbal collagen, synthesized by the body. Exogenous collagen is artificial. It originates from an outside resource, such as supplements.

Endogenous collagen has actually a variety of essential features. Breakdown and also depletion is attached to a variety of wellness difficulties.

Exogenous collagen is supplied for clinical and also cosmetic functions, including the repair of body tissues.


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Share on PinterestCollagen has a sturdy framework. Gram-for-gram, some types are stronger than steel.
Collagen is a difficult, insoluble, and also fibrous protein that provides up one-third of the protein in the human body.

In many collagens, the molecules are packed together to develop long, thin fibrils.

These act as supporting frameworks and anchor cells to each various other. They give the skin stamina and also elasticity.

Tright here are at leastern 16 different forms of collagen, but 80 to 90 percent of them belong to kinds 1, 2, and 3. These different kinds have different frameworks and also functions.

The collagens in the humale body are solid and functional.

Type 1 collagen fibrils are especially qualified of being stretched. Gram-for-gram, they are stronger than steel.


Roles: What does collagen do?

Collagen is secreted by various cells, but mainly by connective tissue cells.

It is discovered in the extracellular matrix. This is an detailed netjob-related of macromolecules that determines the physical properties of body tproblems. A macromolecule is a molecule containing a huge number of atoms.


Share on PinterestWith age, collagen weakens, bring about wrinkles and cartilage problems.

In the dermis, or the middle layer of skin, collagen helps develop a fibrous netjob-related of cells referred to as fibroblasts, upon which new cells have the right to prosper. It also plays a function in replacing and restoring dead skin cells.

Some collagens act as protective coverings for fragile organs in the body, such as the kidneys.

With age, the body produces much less collagen. The structural integrity of the skin declines. Wrinkles develop, and joint cartilage weakens.

Women suffer a dramatic reduction in collagen synthesis after menopausage.

By the age of 60 years, a substantial decrease in collagen production is normal.


Uses: Medical and cosmetic

Collagen is resorbable. This means it deserve to be broken dvery own, converted, and also soaked up earlier into the body. It have the right to also be created right into compacted solids or lattice-choose gels.

Its diverse array of features and the truth that it is naturally occurring make it clinically functional and also suitable for various clinical objectives.

Collagen for clinical use have the right to originate from human beings, cows, pigs, or lamb.

Skin fillers

Collagen injections have the right to enhance the contours of the skin and fill out depressions.

Fillers that contain collagen can be used cosmetically to remove lines and wrinkles from the confront. It deserve to also improve scars, as long as these carry out not have actually a sharp edge.

These fillers are sourced from people and cows. Skin tests must be done before using collagen from cows, to prevent aggravating any type of allergies.

Collagen have the right to fill relatively superficial quantities. More substantial gaps are usually filled through substances such as fat, silicone, or implants.

Wound dressing

Collagen deserve to aid heal wounds by attracting new skin cells to the wound website. It promotes healing and provides a platcreate for new tproblem growth.

Collagen dressings can help heal:

chronic wounds that execute not respond to various other treatmentwounds that expel bodily fluids such as urine or sweatgranulating wounds, on which different tproblem growsnecrotic or rotting woundspartial and also full-thickness woundssecond-level burnssites of skin donation and skin grafts

Collagen dressings are not recommended for third-level burns, wounds spanned in dry eschar, or for patients that might be sensitive to products sourced from cows.

Guided tproblem regeneration

Collagen-based membranes have actually been offered in periodontal and also implant therapy to promote the growth of specific kinds of cell.

In oral surgical procedure, collagen barriers deserve to proccasion fast-growing cells roughly the gum from migrating to a wound in a tooth. This preserves an area where tooth cells have actually the chance to regenerate.

Collagen-based membranes deserve to aid healing in these situations and also they are resorbable, so this barrier does not have to be surgically removed after the primary procedure.

Vascular prosthetics

Collagen tworry grafts from donors have actually been supplied in peripheral nerve rebirth, in vascular prostheses, and also in arterial rebuilding.

While collagen prostheses are compatible through the humale body, some have actually been uncovered to be thrombogenic, or likely to reason coagulation of the blood.

Treatment of osteoarthritis

Collagen supplements or formulations might assist treat osteoarthritis.

A 2006 testimonial discovered that supplements containing collagen helped decrease painful symptoms and also improving joint attribute in civilization with osteoarthritis.

As the supplement was soaked up, collagen accumulated in the cartilage, and also this assisted to reconstruct the extracellular matrix.

Not all research studies have actually sustained these findings, but.

Skin revitalization


Share on PinterestCollagen creams are unlikely to occupational, as collagen molecules are too huge to pass via the skin.

Many kind of products containing collagen, consisting of creams and powders, claim to revitalize the skin by enhancing collagen levels within the body.

This is unlikely, yet, as collagen molecules are too large to be soaked up with the skin.

Any advantage is most likely due to the moisturizing results of these products. They perform not directly rise collagen.

Such therapies are additionally not classified as drugs, so any claims about their efficacy execute not need to be scientifically prstove. Caution is advised as soon as making use of these assets.


Laser treatment can help treat stretch marks, as it can stimulate the development of collagen, elastin, and also melanin.

A healthful diet can help the body create collagen.

Nutrients that may support collagen development include:

Copper: In shellfish, nuts, red meat, and some drinking water.

What damages collagen?

Some determinants deserve to deplete the levels of collagen within the body. Avoiding them could save the skin healthy and balanced for longer.

High sugar consumption: A high-sugar diet rises the rate of glycation, a procedure where blood sugars connect to proteins to form brand-new molecules called advanced glycation end commodities (AGEs).

AGEs damages nearby proteins and have the right to make collagen dry, brittle, and also weak.

Smoking: Many kind of chemicals current in tobacco smoke damage both collagen and elastin in the skin.

Nicotine additionally narrows the blood vessels in the outer layers of the skin. This compromises skin health by reducing the delivery of nutrients and also oxygen to the skin.

Sunlight: Ultraviolet rays in sunlight cause collagen to break down more rapidly, damaging collagen fibers and also leading to abnormal elastin to build up.

The UV rays in sunlight damage the collagen in the dermis, and also the skin rebuilds mistakenly, forming wrinkles.

Autoimmune disorders: Some autoimmune disorders reason antibodies to target collagen.

Genetic changes can affect the extracellular matrix. The collagen that is produced deserve to be lower, or it may be dysfunctional, mutated collagen.

The aging process reasons collagen levels to deplete normally over time. There is no way to proccasion this.

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Avoiding tobacco and also excess sunlight expocertain and complying with a healthful dietary and exercise regimen have the right to help reduce visible aging and protect collagen, maintaining the skin, bones, muscles, and also joints healthy and balanced for much longer.