Wounding with a microneedling device corrects the inappropriate ultraviolet B radiation response in geriatric skin

Jeffrey B. Travers, Michael G. Kemp, Nathan M. Weir, Elizabeth Cates, Abdulrahman M. Alkawar, Avinash S. Mahajan, Dan F. Spandau

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Scopus citations


Non-melanoma skin cancer primarily affects geriatric patients as evidenced by the fact that only 20% of these cancers are diagnosed in patients under the age of 60 years. Of importance, geriatric skin responds to procarcinogenic ultraviolet B radiation (UVB) in a manner that permits the establishment of tumor cells. Recent studies have indicated that wounding of geriatric skin with fractionated resurfacing lasers and dermabrasion upregulates fibroblast production of insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) and normalizes the procarcinogenic acute UVB response consisting of basal keratinocytes proliferating while still harboring unrepaired DNA damage. The present studies tested the ability of wounding with a commercially available microneedling device to upregulate IGF-1 levels and normalize the geriatric UVB response. Geriatric volunteers were treated with a microneedling device on buttock skin and 3 months later the IGF-1 levels and UVB responses tested in wounded vs control skin. Wounding via microneedling upregulated IGF-1 and resulted in lower levels of basal keratinocytes proliferating with unrepaired DNA damage. The ability of microneedling to protect against the formation of UVB-damaged proliferating keratinocytes indicates the potential of this wounding modality to reduce aging-associated non-melanoma skin cancer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalArchives of Dermatological Research
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2019


  • Insulin-like growth factor-1
  • Ultraviolet B radiation
  • Wounding

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology

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