Collagen Definition - What Is Collagen ? - Health Article

Collagen Definition - What Is Collagen ?

What is collagen ?


Collagen is an adhesive-forming protein that a very important part of the connective tissue in the body of humans and animals. In total there are more than 25 different types of collagen, but type I to IV are by far the most important and most common in the human body. Of the total number of collagens is 90% the type i. skin, bones, tendons, cartilage and teeth is made up mostly of collagen.

Collagen skin

forming protein that a very important part of the connective tissue in the body of humans  Collagen Definition - What Is Collagen ?


Collagen is with 70% a staple of the loose connective tissue in human skin. It forms part of the extracellular matrix. Collagen is responsible for firmness and elasticity of the skin. During the renewal process of the skin is sufficient collagen made at a young age to the skin young, firm and smooth. After 25 takes the collagen production steadily. As a result, aging skin and wrinkles, the skin becomes Slacker and effects from the outside have a greater influence on the skin.

Structure of collagen


Collagen is in fact a supra-molecular structure. She is made up of interconnected tropocollagen units, which in turn consist of three polypeptide chains intertwined with each other. This polypeptide chains are the most basic building blocks of collagen and consist of repetitions of an amino acid motif: glycine-X-Y. Here is the amino acid proline and usually on the X position on the Y position usually hydroxyproline. Hydroxylysine, alanine, arginine, glutamic acid, and aspartic acid also come in significant quantities.

The individual polypeptide chains take a left-handed helix structure, with only 3 amino acids per turn. This is a consequence of the conformational restrictions which become imposed by the presence of proline. The tropocollagen is a super right-handed helix, about 300 nm long and 1.5 nm wide, formed from three such polypeptide chains. The presence of glycine, which possesses no amino acid residue, ensures that the three polypeptide chains to each other can draw near with each other and sufficient inter-molecular interactions, particularly hydrogen bonds, can contract. The absence of cysteine ensures that no disulfide bridges can be formed there.

The tropocollagen helices associate with each other to collagen fibers of 20 to 200 nm wide.

Consequences of inefficient collagen

The enzyme proline post-translationally hydroxylates vitamin C used as a co-enzyme. Vitamin C deficiency leads to inefficient hydroxylation and the formed collagen fibers are therefore less stable. In extreme cases, this leads to scurvy, a disease that was often used by non-varied diet.

Cosmetic application

All types of collagen will be incorporated in cosmetic products. Bovine collagen and fish collagen for this are most commonly used. The function of collagen in cosmetics is to make the skin to give a protective layer. Since it binds well as tissue and is easy to use as a filling in of the skin, collagen is also widely used in the plastic surgery.

Non-human collagen

Fish collagen
Fish collagen is the most pure form of collagen. The structure is similar to that of human skin, which made it possible to process it in a number of cosmetic products.

Bovine Collagen
Bovine Collagen has substantially the same properties. The collagen is since the outbreak of BSE, mad cow disease less used because of the idea that the disease through injections of bovine collagen could be transferred.

Porcine Collagen
For some years now, porcine collagen used in cosmetic wrinkle treatment. This perkara does not exist with BSE infection. Furthermore, this collagen is easy to process, so that the average of 1 year in the skin remains seated.

Plant Collagen
Plants Collagen differs the most to that of man. It is used in some cosmetic products for the skin to give a protective layer.

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