Pca (inci)

Author: Prof. Dr. med. Peter Altmeyer

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Last updated on: 29.10.2020

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2-pyrrolidone-5-carboxylic acid; Pyrroglutamic acid; Pyrrolidone carboxylic acid

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PCA, is the acronym for the synthetic 2-pyrrolidone-5-carboxylic acid (pyrroglutamic acid). PCA is formed from the proteogenic amino acid glutamic acid and is considered to be a moisturizing factor for the skin. Glutamic acid cyclizes to the L-pyrrolidone carboxylic acid when heated.

Field of application/use
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The sodium salt of pyrrolidone carboxylic acid (PCA) is found in human skin and is considered an important component of thenatural moisturizing factor(NMF) of the epidermis. PCA sodium salt is well soluble in water as well as in alcohol or glycerin. PCA sodium salt can be mixed well with other hydrating agents.

PCA sodium salt also plays an important role in cosmetics and especially in skin and hair care. In hair care, PCA makes wet hair easier to comb after washing. In cosmetics and the compound is used especially in products for dry and sensitive skin. It is well tolerated by the skin and is allergologically safe. A well tolerated and well hydrating mixture is e.g. a combination of PCA (pyrrolidone carboxylic acid), glycerin and sodium lactate.

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Water-binding substances such as free amino acids, lactic acid and its sodium salt, hyaluronic acid, polyhydric alcohols and urea as well as PCA are of particular importance for the hydration of the cornea. These components which are important for the hydration of the skin are summarized under the term "Natural Moisturizing Factor - NMF".


Last updated on: 29.10.2020