Journal of Fluorescence

, Volume 26, Issue 2, pp 709–717 | Cite as

Transmittance and Autofluorescence of Neonatal Rat Stratum Corneum: Nerolidol Increases the Dynamics and Partitioning of Protoporphyrin IX into Intercellular Membranes

  • Lais Alonso
  • Cássia Alessandra Marquezin
  • Pablo José Gonçalves
  • Antonio Alonso


In this work, we developed an experimental apparatus to directly measure transmittance and fluorescence in the stratum corneum (SC) ex vivo. The SC transmittance varied from ~6 to ~52 % in the wavelength range of 280–850 nm. For 260–300 nm excitation, the SC autofluorescence showed a strong emission band between 290 and 425 nm, which is associated with tryptophan, and another in the 600–670 nm range, which we attributed to a process involving resonance energy transfer to very hydrophobic keratin filaments. Weaker emission associated with less hydrophobic keratin filaments was also observed in the wavelength range of 350–480 nm. Protoporphyrin IX (PpIX) was incorporated into SC membranes, and its penetration was further increased by the addition of nerolidol to the treatment suspension. Both PpIX and the endogenous porphyrins showed fluorescence anisotropy consistent with their localization in SC membranes, and their molecular dynamics increased significantly in the presence of 1 % nerolidol. The emission and excitation spectra of PpIX and the endogenous SC porphyrins showed similar alterations during the photobleaching induced by 405-nm irradiation. This work also highlights the SC contribution to skin autofluorescence, which could be useful for fluorescence spectroscopy applications in the early diagnosis of skin diseases.


Nerolidol Fluorescence Stratum corneum PpIX 



This work was supported by the Brazilian research funding agencies CNPq, FAPEG and CAPES. L. Alonso acknowledges CAPES for doctoral fellowship support. P. J. Gonçalves and A. Alonso gratefully acknowledge CNPq for research grants. The authors also thank Dr. Jesiel F. Carvalho, Dr. Renata M. Pereira and Dr. Lauro J. Q. Maia for their assistance with instruments.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lais Alonso
    • 1
  • Cássia Alessandra Marquezin
    • 1
  • Pablo José Gonçalves
    • 1
  • Antonio Alonso
    • 1
  1. 1.Instituto de FísicaUniversidade Federal de GoiásGoiâniaBrazil

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