Wednesday, May 14, 2008

SYN-AKE Synthetic Snake Venom in Skin Care?

Sny-ake is a synthetic snake venom engineered to mimic actual snake venom for use in anti-age skin care in an attempt to reduce muscle cell contractions that cause wrinkles, and in doing so, provide botox-like results without an injection.

Syn-ake is manufactured by Pentapharm, a fifty year old Swiss pharmaceutical company, and is described as an 'anti-wrinkle peptide' found in some of the top anti-age products on the market today. According to our research, Pentapharm is the largest snake breeder and keeper in the world and breeds venomous snakes for the purpose of producing therapeutic and diagnostic products, such as anticoagulants and haemostatics. Their experience led them to investigate the venom in the Temple Viper (distant cousin to the rattle snake found in southeast asia), its paralytic properties for use in cosmetic applications, and narrowed it down to a combination of three amino acids bound together that inhibit, or block, the signals to the muscle to contract. Their active ingredient and findings won the 2006 Swiss Technology Award.

When all is said and done, one very big question remains. Is this a case of vanity insanity or is this a case of brilliant cosmetic science? While it all sounds interesting, and we have confirmed its presence in several professional products, our jury is still out on this one.