Gluconolactone is a delta-lactone of the glutamic acid obtained by the oxidation of glucose from corn. a
polyhydroxy acid with high hydrating power, softer than alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) and can be used
sensitive areas such as the eyes and lips.
Found naturally in the skin, as it participates in the sugar metabolic pathway at the cellular level. It has 4 groups
hydroxyl (in the form of lactone) and 5 hydroxyl groups (in the acid form) penetrating the skin more slowly,
Due to the presence of hydroxyls, it has humectant properties to attract and fix water. Has action
antioxidant, for maintaining the integrity of the products. Anti-inflammatory activity for reducing inflamed lesions.
1- A study published in 2003 revealed that Gluconolactone can be as effective as traditional ones
AHA’s in the treatment of aged skin, with the advantage of not irritating the skin.
The North American study compared the beneficial effects on the skin in the anti-aging treatment between alpha hydroxy acids and poly hydroxy acids. The study was conducted for 12 weeks and the researchers concluded:
Polyhydroxy acids showed similar efficacy to AHA’s, but provided better
smoothness to the skin.
2- Another study published by “Cosmetic Dermatology” evaluated the clinical effects of Gluconolactone in
patients with sensitive skin who had mild to moderate photoaging and / or rosacea. The
results were very interesting and quite favorable.
Patients were treated for 12 weeks with the following formulations, applied twice a day and at
First step: cleaning cream with 1% gluconolactone.
Second step: alcohol-free tonic lotion with 1% gluconolactone.
Third step: moisturizing cream with SPF 15 and 4% gluconolactone.
The researchers concluded that Gluconolactone was well tolerated by sensitive skin and widely
compatible with skins of patients with rosacea and atopy.
Gluconolactone treatment showed:
- Improves skin texture and signs of photoaging;
- Reduction of fine lines, dryness and itching;
- Reduction of erythema, inflammation and skin irritation with rosacea.
3- Other surprising studies approached 14% Gluconolactone in the treatment of acne. The study
compared to 5% benzoyl peroxide, an active well known for its effectiveness in treating acne from
grade II. No less than 150 patients participated in the study. The researchers concluded that the
14% gluconolactone is as effective as 5% benzoyl peroxide, with the advantage of causing
fewer side effects like skin irritation and dryness. It is worth remembering that benzoyl peroxide is strongly
oxidant which can generate high amounts of free radicals in the skin leading to premature aging. So much
that some report the need to apply tocotrienols to skin treated with benzoyl peroxide in order to
minimize harmful effects caused by intense oxidation.
The researchers believe that 14% Gluconolactone exerts its effect by modifying keratinization and
preventing the development of comedones. They also suggest that Gluconolactone has an
Other advantages of Gluconolactone:
- Does not induce photosensitization of the skin;
- It is not irritating and reinforces the skin barrier function;
- It was well tolerated and effective in treating signs of photoaging in different ethnic groups.
PH range: Like other hydroxy acids, GLUCONOLACTONE needs to be in its acid form to penetrate the
skin. For this reason, the pH of the formulation is important: products formulated in a pH range between 3.5 to 4.5
effective and safe for home use.
Chemical Name: Gluconic Acid Delta-lactone (converts spontaneously to acid form in the presence of water)
Other Names: Polyhydroxy acid G4, GDL
Origin: Obtained by the oxidation of corn glucose
Acne Treatment, Against
photoaging, rosacea, seborrheic dermatitis and atopic dermatitis. Indicated for formulations
depigmentants, pre and post solar formulations, revitalizing and moisturizing.
BIBLIOGRAPHICAL REFERENCES: FARMACAN - Pharmacy of manipulation and homeopathy
Australas J. Dermatol. 1992; 33: 131-4.
Cutis. 2003 Feb; 73 (2 Suppl): 14-7.