A key player in the skin’s ageing process

The dermal-epidermal junction is the area of tissue that joins the dermal and the epidermal layers of the skin. Also known as the epidermal basement membrane zone, it is divided into four parts:

  • The basal cell plasma membrane.
  • The lamina lucida which is between 20 and 40 nm thick and traversed by anchoring filaments rich in laminin.
  • The lamina densa which is between 30 and 60 nm thick depending on the person’s age and mainly composed of type IV collagen but also laminins. It constitutes the intermediate anchorage zone for the anchoring filaments originating from the epidermis and the anchoring fibrils issued from the fibrillar zone of the papillary dermis.
  • The fibrillar zone is comprised of anchoring fibres with a thickness of 20 to 60 nm made of type VII collagen. These fibres connect the lamina densa to the anchoring plaques in the papillary dermis or form entangled loops joining two parts of the lamina densa.

Role of the dermal-epidermal junction

The dermal-epidermal junction has several essential functions:

  • To bind tightly the epidermis to the dermis
  • To determine the polarity of the basal keratinocytes, the spatial keratinocyte organisation and the epidermal structure
  • To serve as a selective barrier that controls molecular and cellular exchanges between the two compartments
  • A fundamental role during the skin’s repair process by serving through its laminins as a substrate for adhesion, growth and the migration of keratinocytes

Ageing of the skin

With time (oxidization, hormone changes, etc.), or due to external environmental factors, the skin becomes thinner: the dermis and epidermis weaken and the regeneration rate of keratinocytes slows down. The properties of the DEJ are altered: interaction between the dermis and the epidermis is reduced, adhesion of keratinocytes decreases and the area of contact becomes flatter. When the skin’s repair process slows down, wrinkles form and the skin starts to sag.

CEBELIA’s anti-ageing approach zeroes in on the dermal-epidermal junction and more particularly on the role of laminins and anchoring filaments. Thanks to the collaboration with Dr. Patricia Rousselle and her teams, CEBELINE, an active fragment of Laminin 5, has been developed to maintain the go od integrity of the DEJ


Research &

Manifeste Cebelia

The founder

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