Data on OneSkin's Peptide 14, a Topical Senotherapeutic, in Human Skin Models and Skin Biopsies

You might recall that OneSkin recently launched a cosmetic product claimed to reduce levels of senescent cells in aged skin, as measured by the usual markers for cellular senescence, such as p16 expression and senescence-associated β-galactosidase. Removal of senescent cells is more or less literal rejuvenation, given that the accumulation of such cells drives chronic inflammation, tissue dysfunction, and degenerative aging. Clearance of a large fraction of senescent cells via senolytic drugs has been shown to extend life and turn back measures of aging in a number of animal studies.

The OneSkin product contains a bunch of the usual things one puts into skin care products, all of which can be safely ignored, but the core of it is peptide 14, also called OS-01 and decapeptide-52. This may or may not be a senolytic compound, capable of selectively destroying senescent cells to some degree. The evidence presented in today's preprint paper suggests that the observed effect on markers of cellular senescence is more likely achieved by preventing at least some cells from entering the senescent state.

In this, the use of peptide 14 might be similar in outcome to the topical application of rapamycin. In that case, researchers are fairly confident that no direct destruction of senescent cells is taking place, only a reduction in senescent cell creation and activity. This can be enough in aged skin to allow existing processes of senescent cell clearance to catch up over a timescale of a few months, and meaningful reduce the number of these errant cells and their impact on tissue function. Interestingly, the OneSkin folk used rapamycin as a positive control, and found it worsened aspects of their skin models even as it lowered markers of cellular senescence - so perhaps not something to dive into until more data has accumulated.

Looking at the meat of the data in this preprint, peptide 14 performs as well or better than topical rapamycin in reducing markers of cellular senescence, at least in skin models and in skin biopsies taken from older volunteers. Formal trials and resulting human data are pending - though the product is available for anyone who wants to give it a try. Given the existing data, it will be interesting to see how the product performs in older people in comparison to topical rapamycin use.

Senotherapeutic peptide reduces skin biological age and improves skin health markers

Skin aging has been primarily related to aesthetics and beauty. Therefore, interventions have focused on reestablishing skin appearance, but not necessarily skin health, function, and resilience. Recently, cellular senescence was shown to play a role in age-related skin function deterioration and influence organismal health and, potentially, longevity.

In the present study, a two-step screening was performed to identify peptides capable of reducing cellular senescence in human dermal fibroblasts (HDF) from Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria (HGPS) patients. From the top four peptides of the first round of screening, we built a 764-peptide library using amino acid scanning, of which the second screen led to the identification of peptide 14. Peptide 14 effectively decreased HDF senescence induced by HGPS, chronological aging, ultraviolet-B radiation, and etoposide treatment, without inducing significant cell death, and likely by modulating longevity and senescence pathways.

We further validated the effectiveness of peptide 14 using human skin equivalents and skin biopsies, where peptide 14 promoted skin health and reduced senescent cell markers, as well as the biological age of samples, according to the Skin-Specific DNA methylation clock, MolClock. Topical application of peptide 14 outperformed Retinol treatment, the current gold-standard in "anti-aging" skin care. Finally, we determined that peptide 14 is safe for long-term applications and also significantly extends both the lifespan and healthspan of C. elegans worms tested in two independent testings. This highlights the potential for geroprotective applications of the senotherapeutic compounds identified using our screening platform beyond the skin.


I'm glad you seem to be cautious optimistic Reason for this product. First I'd like to try it if it gives measurable results. Second, it should give a needed boost to the rejuvenation market.

Posted by: Robert at November 6th, 2020 3:44 PM

Yes I suppose part of it is senescent cells, however... there is also some sort of cross-linking of collagen going on in the extra cellular spaces, correct?

And for that, science has developed this new technology called "lytec". The groups working on PROTACs developed this.

To hear more about this I recommend the recent a16z podcast where they discuss biotech advancements, with a focus on PROTACs.

Very cool science where they are hacking the existing machinery that degrades unwanted proteins using the proteasome.

Lytecs use the lysosome.

Write something up on this please!

Posted by: Matt at November 7th, 2020 2:42 AM

Is there any reason why Oisin couldn't produce a cosmetic product quickly too?

Posted by: Jimofz at November 7th, 2020 3:13 AM

@Jimofz: Three reasons. One, our gene therapy can't be marketed as a cosmetic; it needs to go though clinical trial as an FDA-approved therapeutic for a disease indication. Two, our PLV (proteo-lipid vehicle, a lipid-based nanoparticle) won't easily penetrate the stratum corneum layer of the skin (unlike small molecules). Third, like the problem Unity had with killing SnCs in the knee joint, if you try to kill senescent cells locally, you run the risk that the SnCs in the rest of the body will still inhibit the stem cells locally, preventing regeneration. The skin might be somewhat different, but at the moment we think that systemic administration of senolytics are to be preferred over local. Note that OneSkin's product is seemingly mostly a senomorphic, rather than a senolytic. Full disclosure: I use it.

Posted by: Gary at November 7th, 2020 6:05 PM

I find it odd that a small molecule drug is regarded by the FDA as "cosmetic" yet a gene therapy having the same effect is a drug. Still, I guess that's the world we live in.

Personally I agree with Reason in thinking that Senolytics won't do much for the youthful appearance of skin in the 25-50 age bracket. Finding small molecule drugs to activate regnerative cells in the skin might be a more useful approach:

Posted by: jimofoz at November 9th, 2020 5:51 AM

oneskin is not senolytic, it claims to be a senomorphic.Senomorphics suppress the SASP or SASP components without killing senescent cells. They need to be administered continuously. I did subscribe to their auto shop program each month. Hope it's different than the thousands of other " miracle creams" out there.

Posted by: august33 at August 4th, 2021 12:30 AM

@ august33 have you seen any positive change in your skin? If anyone else has tried the product, would you recommend it? Thanks.

Posted by: Auroba at April 16th, 2022 5:58 AM

I've now been using oneskin for one year. My skin definitely looks better than last year but it took months. Not sure there is dramatic change however. Less flakey and irritated.

Posted by: august33 at July 1st, 2022 9:10 PM

Tretinoin and Peptide14 have different mechanisms. But as a consumer, I'd like to know which is better to use to fight skin aging and decrease wrinkles and make acne scars shallower. There's also a product called Recover X, developed by Dermafacs, that uses orthosilicic acid. Mechanism is also different compared to the two, but again as a simple consumer, which product would most likely address the issues I mentioned. Would taking all three be the best strategy, or perhaps only two, or one product is enough to address all issues?

Posted by: Edna at January 21st, 2023 5:32 PM

My partner and I have been using it for about two months but so far I can't say it has made any difference. Will probably start taking pictures every so often to see if it shows any visible improvement. Your mileage may vary.

Posted by: Joe Da Silva at January 22nd, 2023 6:28 AM

I have been using One Skin for a little over two months and have noticed positive changes in my skin. I will also alternate its use with Rapamycin every few weeks and Retin A once or twice a week. As a foundation to One skin, I first apply The Ordinary Buffet peptides at night, and Skinceuticals phloretin serum in the morning. Finally, 3-4 times a year I do Sciton's Forever Young BBL on my face and entire upper body. I am constantly researching ways to slow, and hopefully reverse skin aging. I look for products that are backed by science and would appreciate any insight on other treatments that people are using

Posted by: Lex C at October 28th, 2023 4:06 PM
Comment Submission

Post a comment; thoughtful, considered opinions are valued. New comments can be edited for a few minutes following submission. Comments incorporating ad hominem attacks, advertising, and other forms of inappropriate behavior are likely to be deleted.

Note that there is a comment feed for those who like to keep up with conversations.