If the news today about three scientists winning the Nobel prize for their work on telomeres sounded familiar, that is because you read it first at Truth In Aging. Telomeres allow cells to distinguish chromosome ends from broken DNA and far-sighted cosmetic formulators - such as Osmotics and Your Best Face - are starting to use them as their anti-aging actives.

So how do telomeres work? If DNA is broken there are two options after the cell cycle is stopped: Repair or death. If cells divided without telomeres, they would lose the end of their chromosomes, and the necessary information it contains. They are often described as being like the tips on the ends of shoelaces that stop them unraveling (the pink bits in the image). Telomeres shorten every time a cell divides. When they become very short, they trigger cell crisis and cell death. As we know, cells can only replicate a limited number of times – a phenomena called the Hayflick Limit. There's more on telomeres in an article posted last August.

In cosmetics, the objective not to lengthen the teleomeres, stabilize them so that at least they won’t shorten. Maintaining telomere length extends, we are told, the Hayflick Limit by one third. A product called Renovage (made by the people behind Matrixyl) aims to do just that and is used in Osmotics Renovage eye cream and Osmotics Renovage Cellular Longevity Serum. You will also find it in Boost by Your Best Face.

Renovage is made by combining triglyceride with teprenone. I'll be researching more products that contain it and if you know of any please drop me a line.