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 July 27, 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 July 27, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Beatings and Addiction: Pakistan Drug 'clinic' Tortures Patients

Beatings and Addiction: Pakistan Drug 'clinic' Tortures Patients

AFP (July 24, 2014) — A so-called drugs rehab 'clinic' is closed down in Pakistan after police find scores of ‘patients’ chained up alleging serial abuse. Duration 03:05 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Too Few Teens Receiving HPV Vaccination, CDC Says

Too Few Teens Receiving HPV Vaccination, CDC Says

Newsy (July 24, 2014) — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is blaming doctors for the low number of children being vaccinated for HPV. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

Newsy (July 24, 2014) — The FDA approved Targiniq ER on Wednesday, a painkiller designed to keep users from abusing it. Like any new medication, however, it has doubters. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctor At Forefront Of Fighting Ebola Outbreak Gets Ebola

Doctor At Forefront Of Fighting Ebola Outbreak Gets Ebola

Newsy (July 24, 2014) — Sheik Umar Khan has treated many of the people infected in the Ebola outbreak, and now he's become one of them. 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