Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Even Natural Perfumes May Cause Allergies

Date:
February 11, 2009
Source:
University of Gothenburg
Summary:
Hypersensitivity to perfumes is the most common contact allergy in adults. Research has demonstrated that even natural aromatic oils, which many deem harmless compared to synthetic perfumes, may cause allergic reactions.

Hypersensitivity to perfumes is the most common contact allergy in adults. Research at the University of Gothenburg has demonstrated that even natural aromatic oils, which many deem harmless compared to synthetic perfumes, may cause allergic reactions.
Credit: iStockphoto/Florea Marius Catalin

Hypersensitivity to perfumes is the most common contact allergy in adults. Research at the University of Gothenburg has demonstrated that even natural aromatic oils, which many deem harmless compared to synthetic perfumes, may cause allergic reactions.

Roughly one in five adults in northern Europe is believed to suffer from contact allergy to one or more chemicals. The most common is nickel allergy, but many people also suffer from contact allergy to perfumes – even perfume substances that at first glance appear to be harmless can cause allergic reactions. New eczema-provoking allergens are formed by reaction with acid in the ambient air (known as autoxidation) or with skin enzymes.

Modern society commonly regards anything that comes from nature as being healthier and less dangerous. Where it concerns natural aromas, known as essential oils, many manufacturers believe that natural antioxidants in these oils offer protection against autoxidation thus making them safer and longer lasting than artificial perfumes. Research at the University of Gothenburg shows this is not the case.

Lina Hagvall, a researcher at the University of Gothenburg's Department of Chemistry, has examined natural lavender oil in her thesis. Her results show that essential oils do not prevent the formation of allergenic substances through reactions with acid; something which had not previously been possible to confirm. Hagvall's thesis also examines geraniol, a common constituent of perfumes such as rose oil. The study shows geraniol by itself to be only slightly allergenic. However through autoxidation and reaction with skin enzymes, the substance is activated and becomes the closely related allergen geranial. This is the first time these activation pathways have been demonstrated for the substance.

It is important to investigate how perfumes react with air or on skin. Lina Hagvall's thesis concludes that such risks must be factored into health risk assessments of chemicals relating to contact allergy. The thesis also demonstrates that more perfumes than previously believed can be activated into allergens, and that more studies should be done to increase knowledge within the field and thus reduce the number of eczema cases.

Hagvall's thesis, Formation of Skin Sensitizers from Fragrance Terpenes via Oxidative Activation Routes. Chemical analysis, Structure Elucidation and Experimental Sensitization Studies was defended on the January 30th. The supervisor was Ann-Therese Karlberg, professor of dermatochemistry and head of the research platform Gφteborg Science Centre for Molecular Skin Research at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden.

 


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Gothenburg. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Gothenburg. "Even Natural Perfumes May Cause Allergies." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 February 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090203110549.htm>.
University of Gothenburg. (2009, February 11). Even Natural Perfumes May Cause Allergies. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090203110549.htm
University of Gothenburg. "Even Natural Perfumes May Cause Allergies." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090203110549.htm (accessed April 17, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) — A new study conducted by researchers at Northwestern and Harvard suggests even casual marijuana use can alter your brain. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Thousands Of Vials Of SARS Virus Go Missing

Thousands Of Vials Of SARS Virus Go Missing

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) — A research institute in Paris somehow misplaced more than 2,000 vials of the deadly SARS virus. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Formerly Conjoined Twins Released From Dallas Hospital

Formerly Conjoined Twins Released From Dallas Hospital

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) — Conjoined twins Emmett and Owen Ezell were separated by doctors in August. Now, nearly nine months later, they're being released from the hospital. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Outbreak Now Linked To 121 Deaths

Ebola Outbreak Now Linked To 121 Deaths

Newsy (Apr. 15, 2014) — The ebola virus outbreak in West Africa is now linked to 121 deaths. Health officials fear the virus will continue to spread in urban areas. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins