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Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity
Volume 2015, Article ID 359740, 11 pages
Research Article

Novel Antioxidant Tripeptide “ACQ” Can Prevent UV-Induced Cell Death and Preserve the Number of Epidermal Stem Cells

Department of Dermatology, Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, 166 Gumi-ro, Bundang-gu, Seongnam-si, Gyeonggi-do 463-707, Republic of Korea

Received 2 April 2015; Accepted 8 June 2015

Academic Editor: Tullia Maraldi

Copyright © 2015 Hye-Ryung Choi et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


We found that tripeptide “ACQ: alanine-cysteine-glutamine” has significant DPPH scavenging activity compared to that of glutathione. Antioxidant effects of ACQ were tested in in vitro and in vivo models. When treated with H2O2, mock treated fibroblasts and keratinocytes showed strong staining by H2DCFA. But, ACQ showed good protective effects against hydrogen peroxide treatment. When mice were fed for 2 or 4 weeks, similar protective effects were observed. In the control group, epidermis was severely damaged by UV irradiation and apoptotic keratinocytes were observed. There were also numerous TUNEL positive cells. But in the ACQ group, epidermis became thicker and there was no sign of severe damage. Interestingly, the number of p63 cells was also higher in ACQ fed mice. To confirm the stem cell rescuing effects of ACQ, three-dimensional skin samples were constructed. Results showed that ACQ increased the expression of integrin α6 and the number of p63 positive cells. These findings showed that ACQ has good antioxidant activity and may increase stem cell activities by the regulation of integrin α6.