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Hydrogels for Osteochondral
Tissue Engineering
Journal of Biomedical

(March 2020)
Anti-Wrinkle Activity
& Transdermal Delivery
of GHK Peptide
Journal of Peptide Science
(March 2020)
Pulsed Glow Discharge
to GHK-Cu Determination
International Journal
of Mass Spectrometry

(March 2020)
Protective Effects of GHK-Cu
in Pulmonary Fibrosis
Life Sciences
(January 2020)
Anti-Wrinkle Benefits
of GHK-Cu Stimulating
Skin Basement Membrane
International Journal of Molecular Sciences
(January 2020)
Structural Analysis
Molecular Dynamics of
Skin Protective
TriPeptide GHK
Journal of Molecular Structure
(January 2020)
In Vitro / In Vivo Studies
pH-sensitive GHK-Cu in
Superabsorbent Polymer
GHK Enhances
Stem Cells Osteogenesis
Acta Biomaterialia
Antibacterial GHK-Cu
Nanoparticles for
Wound Healing
Particle & Particle (2019)
Effect of GHK-Cu
on Stem Cells and
Relevant Genes
OBM Geriatrics
GHK Alleviates
Neuronal Apoptosis Due
to Brain Hemorrhage
Frontiers in Neuroscience
Endogenous Antioxidant
International Journal of Pathophysiology and Pharmacology (2018)
Regenerative and
Protective Actions of
GHK-Cu Peptide
International Journal of
Molecular Sciences
Skin Regenerative and
Anti-Cancer Actions
of Copper Peptides
GHK-Cu Accelerates
Scald Wound Healing
Promoting Angiogenesis
Wound Repair and

GHK Peptide Inhibits
Pulmonary Fibrosis
by Suppressing TGF-β1
Frontiers in Pharmacology
Skin Cancer Therapy
with Copper Peptides
The Effect of Human
Peptide GHK Relevant to
Nervous System Function
and Cognitive Decline
Brain Sciences (2017)
Effects of Tripeptide
GHK in Pain-Induced
Aggressive Behavior
Bulletin of Experimental
Biology & Medicine
GHK-Cu Elicits
In Vitro Alterations
in Extracellular Matrix
Am Journal of Respiratory
and Critical Care Medicine

Selected Biomarkers &
Copper Compounds
Scientific Reports

GHK-Cu on Collagen,
Elastin, and Facial Wrinkles
Journal of Aging Science
Tri-Peptide GHK-Cu
and Acute Lung Injury

Effect of GHK Peptide
on Pain Sensitivity
Experimental Pharmacology

New Data of the
Cosmeceutical and
TriPeptide GHK
SOFW Journal
GHK Peptide as a
Natural Modulator of
Multiple Cellular Pathways
in Skin Regeneration
BioMed Research (2015)
Resetting Skin Genome
Back to Health
Naturally with GHK
Textbook of Aging Skin
GHK-Cu May Prevent
Oxidative Stress in Skin
by Regulating Copper and
Modifying Expression of
Numerous Antioxidant Genes Cosmetics (2015)
GHK Increases
TGF-β1 in
Human Fibroblasts

Acta Poloniae

The Human Skin Remodeling Peptide Induces Anti-Cancer
Expression and DNA Repair Analytical Oncology
Resetting the
Human Genome to Health
BioMed Research
Enhanced Tropic Factor Secretion of Mesenchymal
Stem Cells with GHK
Acta Biomater
Anxiolytic (Anti-Anxiety)
Effects of GHK Peptide
Bulletin of Experimental
Biology & Medicine
Lung Destruction and
its Reversal by GHK
Genome Medicine
TriPeptide GHK Induces
Programmed Cell Death
of Neuroblastoma
Journal of Biotechnology
Stem Cell
Recovering Effect
of GHK in Skin
Peptide Science
Skin Penetration of
Copper Tripeptide in Vitro
Journal of International
Inflammation Research
Possible Therapeutics
for Colorectal Cancer
Journal of Clinical and
Experimental Metastasis
Methods of Controlling
Differentiation and
Proliferation of Stem Cells
Effects of
Copper Tripeptide
on Irradiated Fibroblasts
American Medical Association
Avoid Buying Fake Copper Peptides Dangerous














Copper Peptides and Skin Remodeling

While all tissue remodeling copper peptides may be similar, most information at this time is about skin repair and renewal.

First generation copper peptides are GHK-copper and chemical analogs that I developed from 1969 to 1991. The second generation are the breakdown resistant, highly adhesive copper peptides.

Skin Renewal and Aging Reversal       

As we age, a number of skin changes occur which require different types of skin care and treatments. These are four basic problems as we age.

Problem 1. The rate of skin cell replacement is reduced producing a thinner, more fragile skin. Skin is replaced every three weeks at age 20 but this increases to every nine weeks by age 50.

Problem 2. Damaged protein accumulates in the skin. This damage can be the results of scars, sun damage, oxidative damage, and the cross-linking of skin proteins by sugars.

Problem 3. After age 25, skin oil production starts to drop. This reduces acne but produces a dryer skin. This drop in oil production becomes more serious after age 45.

Problem 4. The biosynthesis and breakdown of collagen, elastin, and  water-holding GAGs exists in a dynamic balance in young healthy skin. However after age 25, the skin's production of collagen, elastin, the water-holding GAGs is reduced while the rate of breakdown of these factors is increased and starts wrinkle formation and loss of elasticity. The problem become progressively more serious with passing years.

Copper Peptides and Skin Remodeling

Skin Remodeling is the process that removes proteins and older cells from the skin thus removing scars, lesions, and wrinkles while smoothing the skin. Increasing skin remodeling is the key to producing a biologically younger skin.      

Skin remodeling is very active in young people but declines rapidly as humans pass age 20. Many have reported success using copper-peptides to increase skin remodeling as evidenced by reduction or total removal of sun damage marks, skin tags, certain types of moles and age spots, old stretch marks of pregnancy, and burn scars. Usually these are reduced with the combination of copper-peptide creams and glycolic acid creams but often the copper peptides are effective alone. The method produces no skin irritation and results are usually evident in one month although maximum effects often require four months of treatment with copper peptides. As  skin molecules are broken down, certain peptides are liberated that constitute new signals for the surrounding skin cells. An actual regulation loop exists in connective tissue, constituted by peptides generated by ECM degradation and connective tissue cells. They propose the term of "matrikine" to designate such ECM-derived copper-binding peptides are created and these serve as signals for skin rebuilding.

During aging, skin proteins accumulate damage from many causes - sun damage, cross-linking by sugars, free radical injuries and so on. Copper peptides activate both the systems that remove damaged proteins plus the synthesis of new skin proteins. Damaged collagen and elastin are replaced with new elastic and firm collagen and elastin. This removes scar tissue and restores skin elasticity and reduces wrinkles. The activation of such proteins may explain the potent scar reduction properties of such creams.       

Ultrasound scan of the skin of a women aged 59 before and after treatment with copper peptides.Copper peptides produce a better skin renewal in combination with exfoliation or various controlled skin damage methods. Copper peptides help stimulate new capillary formation (angiogenesis), increasing the biosynthesis of collagen, elastin and the water-holding proteoglycans and glycosaminoglycans. The application of copper peptides to the skin's surface creates an environment that helps the skin tighten its barrier and increase its collagen and elastin density. The photo on the right is an ultrasound scan of the skin of a woman (age 59) before treatment with a cream containing copper peptides. On the far right is the same skin after one month of treatment with the complexes. The white-yellow colored areas are the ultrasonic reflection from skin areas that are more dense because of closer cellular binding and increased amounts of collagen and elastin. This is an effect that is opposite to the usual thinning and loosening of skin during aging.       

SRCP creams can be used in combination with (1) exfoliating agents such as alpha hydroxy acids, beta-hydroxy acids, and retinoic acid or by (2) methods that mildly damage skin such as by laser re-surfacing or chemical peels.

Copper Peptides - Used for Scar Reduction

Copper peptides, in combination with the use of exfoliating hydroxy acids, appear to be an excellent method for the reduction of scars and other skin lesions (keratoses, skin tags, some types of moles). 2% salicylic acid works well other hydroxy acids also work. Newer breakdown-resistant copper peptides and hydroxy acids may berubbed into the scar once or twice daily. A reduction in scar appearance should be evident in a month but 6 to 8 months of such applications may be necessary to reach a satisfactory appearance in very old scars (30 to 50 year old scars or stretch marks). While such a method is slow, it is low-cost and will not cause further scarring.This method depends on the hydroxy acids to dissolve a very small amount of the scar, stretch mark, skin tag, or mole daily while the copper peptides enhance subsequent skin repair and possibly also act by activation of metalloproteinases and suppression of the production of the scar producing growth factor TGF-beta1 (references are above). It appears that, under proper stimuli, normal skin will replace the slowly-dissolved skin lesions. See

Cosmetic Skin Renewal and Aging Reversal Studies

Study Result References
Methods to Reverse Aging Effects in
Human Skin
Several open studies gave evidence for wrinkle reduction, blemish reduction, increased skin thickness, elasticity, and improved appearance. Pickart  US Patents, 5,135,913   Skin treatment composition comprises GHL-CU or derivatives for improving skin health, increasing subcutaneous fat, dermal thickness and density, 5,348,943   Cosmetic and skin treatment compositions.
Human Skin Renewal Study

A clinical study which compared the effect on the skin's production of collagen after using creams containing copper-peptides, vitamin C, or retinoic acid (retin-A) Twenty volunteers applied the various creams to their thighs daily for one month. New collagen production was determined by studying skin biopsy samples using immunohistological techniques.

The study found, that after one month, copper-peptides had the most significant effect on collagen production. Significant increases in collagen production were found in 70% of the persons treated with copper-peptide creams, 50% of the persons treated with the vitamin C cream, and 40% of the persons treated with retinoic acid.
Effects of topical creams containing vitamin C, a copper-binding peptide cream and melatonin compared with tretinoin on the ultrastructure of normal skin - A pilot clinical, histologic, and ultrastructural study. Abdulghani A.A.; Sherr A.; Shirin S.; Solodkina G.; Tapia E.M.; Wolf.GottliebA.B.; Dermatology, UMDNJ, Robert Wood Johnson Medical School; Disease Management and Clinical Outcomes, 1998, 1:136-141.
Human Skin Renewal Study
GHK-Cu containing liquid foundation tested on skin appearance, skin elasticity and epidermal thickness in an 8 week study. GHK-Cu containing liquid foundation improved skin appearance, and increased skin elasticity and epidermal thickness.

A Clinical Evaluation of a Copper-Peptide Containing Liquid Foundation and Cream Concealer Designed for Improving Skin Condition.  Appa Y, Barkovic S, Finkey M B, Neutrogena Corporation, Los Angeles, CA,  Stephens, T, TJ Stephens & Associates, Inc, Dallas, TX Abstract P66, American Academy of Dermatology Meeting,  February 2002

Reduction of Photo Damage
GHK-Cu containing creams tested for reducing visible signs of aging and increasing skin density. GHK-Cu containing creams reduced visible signs of aging and increased skin density in 8 weeks on facial skin. 

The Effect of Tripeptide to Copper Ratio in Two Copper Peptide Creams on Photoaged Facial Skin. Leyden J, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA,  Grove,  G, KGL, Inc/Skin Study Center, Broomall, PA;  Barkovic S, Appa Y, Neutrogena Corporation, Los Angeles, CA; Abstract P67, American Academy of Dermatology Meeting, February 2002
Human Skin Renewal Study
GHK-Cu containing creams tested for effect on wrinkles, fine line, skin elasticity, skin density, and thickness. Placebo-controlled study, 71 females, 12 weeks. GHK-Cu containing creams reduced wrinkles and fine lines while increasing skin elasticity, skin density, and thickness.  Skin Care Benefits of Copper Peptide Containing Facial Cream. Leyden J, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA  Stephens T, Thomas J Stephens & Associates, Inc, Dallas, TX; Finkey MB, Barkovic S, Neutrogena Corporation, Los Angeles, CA; Abstract P68, American Academy of Dermatology Meeting,  February 2002
Human Skin Renewal Study
GHK-Cu containing eye creams tested on wrinkles, fine lines and eye appearance in placebo controlled study, 41 females, 12 weeks. In a second placebo controlled, 3 week, half face study, GHK-Cu was significantly better than a vitamin K cream.

GHK-Cu containing eye creams reduced wrinkles and fine lines while improving eye appearance in placebo-controlled study. 

GHK-Cu was significantly better than a vitamin K cream.

Skin Care Benefits of Copper Peptide Containing Eye Creams.  Leyden J, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA; Stephens T, Thomas J Stephens & Associates, Inc, Dallas, TX; Finkey MB, Barkovic S, Neutrogena Corporation, Los Angeles, CA; Abstract P69, American Academy of Dermatology Meeting, February 2002
Review of skin remodeling Pickart L, Copper Peptides for Tissue Regeneration, Specialty Chemicals, Oct. 9, 2002, 29-31. 2002
Human Skin Renewal Study
Renewal with GHK-Cu in SPF 20 skin cream Stephens TJ, Sigler ML, Finkley MB, Appa Y, Skin benefits of a SPF-20 copper peptide containing skin cream, 61th Amer Acad Derm Meeting, San Francisco, 2003
Review of skin remodeling Pickart L, Copper peptides for aging reversal, Body Language Dermatology, April 2003,
Review of skin remodeling Pickart, L, Copperceuticals and the skin, Cosmetics & Toiletries 2003, 118:24-28
Theory of Skin Remodeling
Biochemical theory of mechanism of skin remodeling Pickart L, Skin remodeling copper peptides, Cosmetics & Medicine (Russia) 2004, Number 2, pages 14-29,
Review of Cosmetic Studies on GHK-Cu

A series of placebo-controlled studies found GHK-Cu skin creams to:
1. Tighten loose skin and improve elasticity
2. Improve skin density and firmness
3. Reduce fine lines and deep wrinkles 4. Improve skin clarity
5. Reduce photodamage and mottled hyperpigmentation
6. Strongly increase keratinocyte proliferation in women of 50 year old range

Copper Peptide and Skin, M.B. Finkley, Y. Appa, S. Bhandarkar, Cosmeceuticals and Active Cosmetic, 2nd Edition (ISBN: 0-8247-4239-7), 2005, pp 549-563
GHK actions on sebum production
GHK suppresses sebum production in cultured sebocytes but not overall lipid synthesis Schagen S, Voegeli R, Imfeld D, Schreier T, Zouboulis CC, Lipid regulation in SZ95 sebocytes by glycyl-histidyl-lysine, 16th European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology Congress, 16-20 May 2007
Review of Remodeling
Review of the New Biochemistry and Cell Biology of Skin Remodeling Pickart L, The human tripeptide GHK and tissue remodeling, "Wound Healing and Technology", J. Biomater, Sci. Polymer Edit. Vol 19, No. 8 pp. 969-988 (2008).
Skin Penetration of Copper Peptides
GHK-Cu penetrates skin via the horny lipid layer of the skin barrier

Mazurowska L, Mojski M, Biological activities of selected peptides: skin penetration ability of copper complexes with peptides, J Cosmet Sci. 2008 Jan-Feb;59(1):59-69.

Update on Remodeling
Presented at Wound Healing Society, April 2008

Pickart L and Pickart F, GHK defines the biochemical reactions of tissue remodeling.

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