Introduction to skin microbiome research – limitations and opportunities

Introduction to skin microbiome research – limitations and opportunities

The understanding that microorganisms exhibit a profound impact to our health is now well acknowledged by the research medical community, yet the practical means of implementation as well as regulatory landscape are shaping.

The skin microbiome, the population of resident and transient microorganisms (viruses, bacteria fungi and mites) in our skin is an emerging growing area of research and interest. The identification, classification, mapping, study of diversity, environmental implications and inferences to skin condition are key areas of investigation.

Various molecular and in-silico methods have been developed and employed in this area of research, but the path to utilising this knowledge in skincare product development is limited.

Key questions that are only partially answered include:

  • What is a healthy microbiome baseline?
  • What are the implications of microbial diversity and the shift from homeostasis to clinical manifestation?
  • How the microbiome communicates with skin cells and what the adequate methods are for evaluation?
  • How to select appropriate controls for studies?
  • What are the appropriate methods for sampling and storage?
  • How to best refrain from contamination sources?
  • What is the best sequencing and quantification method to use? Is 16S sequencing sufficient or is it best to use shotgun analysis?
  • How should statistical significance be calculated?
  • Can in-vitro assays on isolated bacteria provide leads to clinical implications?
  • Do preservatives in formulations affect skin microbiome?

These and many other questions will be discussed between professionals in the industry in a session aimed at providing research and development-related insights that may shed light on this evolving area of interest.


Dr. Nava Dayan is President of Dr. Nava Dayan L.L.C., and will be presenting an ‘Introduction to skin microbiome research- limitations and opportunities’ at in-cosmetics North America on Wednesday 17th October 2018 from 15.00-15.30.

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