DNA Skin



DNA | Skin analyses genetic variations on 18 genes associated with key areas involved in skin health and ageing. These are collagen formation, protection from sun and UV exposure, inflammation and protection from oxidative stress. 

The benefit of ordering this test from MY DNA CHOICES.

The feedback session is included in the cost of the test.

Benefits of DNA | Skin 

Based on your DNA | Skin results, you can make more personalised nutrition, environment and lifestyle choices to improve to quality and health of your skin, and decrease the visible signs of ageing. 

This test looks at

Sun damage, protection and repair

The genes tested in this area play an important role in DNA protection and repair. Variants have been associated with increased risk ageing caused by UV exposure. Exposure to UV rays as well as synthetic compounds and environmental pollutants increase the risk of oxidative stress and cellular damage, which has been associated with premature ageing. Certain genes help to repair damaged DNA  thereby offering protection against cellular damage. Variations in these genes lead to decreased efficiency to repair the damage. 

  • XRCC1 - is involved in the efficient repair of DNA single-strand breaks formed by the exposure to UV rays from the sun
  • hOGG1 - involved in repairing DNA from oxidative stress
  • TERT - involved in the process of maintaining telomeres
Sun sensitivity & pigmentation

The gene variants tested in this area have been associated with normal pigmentation and protecting the skin against sun damage. The ability to produce a specific type of melanin, the pigment (or colour) in one's skin is dependent on the genes involved in melanin production. Certain gene variants increase the predisposition for having higher amounts of pigment, pheomelanin, which is associated with a decreased tanning ability and an increased risk for skin sensitivity and skin damage with sun, and UV exposure. 

  • MC1R - encodes for normal pigmentation 
  • ASIP - this gene is involved in regulating the production of melanin
Firmness & elasticity

Changes in the extracellular matrix, with regards to synthesis and degradation, is an important contributing factor skin ageing. The genes in this area are involved in cell growth regulation and tissue remodelling. SNPs tested have an association to accelerated ageing after UV exposure and oxidative stress insult.

  • MMP1 - encodes for the process for the degradation of the extracellular matrix
  • COL1A1 - encodes for an important component of type 1 collagen found in the skin
Protection from oxidative stress

The genes tested in this area code for the key antioxidant enzymes that scavenge free radicals and protection against oxidative stress. Free radicals are highly reactive molecules that can cause damage to our DNA and cells, leading to increased oxidative stress. This has been related to accelerated ageing processes in the body and may increase the risk of the appearance of wrinkles and prematurely aged skin. We are exposed to free radicals when we have a high exposure to pro-carcinogens in the environment. These include cigarette smoke, synthetic chemicals, smoked foods and a diet high in sugar and trans-fats. Free radicals are also a normal by-product of the body's energy-generating processes. 

  • SOD2 - encodes the enzyme that destroys free radicals which are normally produced in cells
  • GPX1 - plays an important role in protecting against oxidative stress
  • CAT - encodes that antioxidant enzyme catalase and protects against oxidative stress 
Detoxification & skin sensitivity

The genes tested in this area code for detoxification enzymes that help process toxins and pollutants from the environment, where variants have been associated with decreased detoxification capacity, and therefore an increased risk for cellular damage and accelerated ageing. The body's natural detoxification process involves two steps: phase 1 and phase 2. A toxin initially enters phase 1, P450 cytochrome system and is reduced into smaller pieces. These then progress to phase 2, where they are bound to molecules such as glutathione, glycine and sulphate. The process creates a non-toxic molecule that can be excreted. 

  • GSPT1 - encodes an important enzyme involved in phase 2 liver detoxification
  • EPHX1 - encodes a critical detoxification pathway particularly for aromatic compounds such a smoke and chemical cleaners
  • NQO1 - encodes a detoxification pathway responsible for removing carcinogenic substances and is involved estrogen metabolism

Pro-inflammatory cytokines are involved in regulating inflammation. If increased expression occurs, due to variation in these genes, there is an increased risk of skin sensitivity and chronic, low-grade inflammation. Inflammation is a normal immune response and an essential step in tissue healing. The release of these inflammatory substances is controlled by genes that govern inflammation. However, when these genes are not 'switched off' the inflammatory response continues. Increased inflammation is associated with skin sensitivity and may accelerate premature ageing.

  • IL6 - encodes an important pro-inflammatory cytokine that plays a role in regulating inflammation
  • IL6R - encodes an important pro-inflammatory cytokine that plays a role in regulating inflammation
  • CRP - encodes a pro-inflammatory pathway that assists in binding foreign and damaged cells, enhancing phagocytosis of macrophages. Support immunity regulation
  • TNFA - plays a role in the pro-inflammatory response in the body and regulating inflammation

List of genes tested

List of genes tested in DNA | Skin
MMP1 1G/2G
MC1R Arg151Cys
ASIP 8818 G>A
hOGG1 Ser326Cys
CAT -262 C>T

Sample report

Sample required

Buccal (cheek) lining swab - this is just a simple, painless firm rub with a long earbud (the swab) on the inside of your cheek. 

Average processing time

Around 14 working days

Understanding genetics

It may sound like something out of a sci-fi movie, but genetic testing is a powerful health tool that can give you a deep understanding of how your body works.

At the heart of it is the molecule DNA. Every single cell in our bodies – from our heart to skin, blood and bone – contains a complete set of our DNA. This powerful molecule carries our genetic code and determines all manner of traits, from our eye colour to aspects of our personalities and, of course, our health.

Interestingly, 99.9% of the DNA from two people is identical. It’s the other 0.1% of DNA code sequences that make us unique.

What are genes?

Genes are segments of DNA that contain the instructions your body needs to make each of the many thousands of proteins required for life. Each gene is comprised of thousands of combinations of ‘letters’ which make up your genetic code. The code gives the instructions to make the proteins required for proper development and function.

What are gene variations?

An example of a genetic variation is that one ‘letter’ may be replaced by another. These variations can lead to changes in the resulting proteins being made. For example, a ‘C’ may be changed to a ‘G’ at a point in the genetic code. When the variation affects only one genetic ‘letter’ it is called a 'Single Nucleotide Polymorphism', or 'SNP' (pronounced “snip”).

Variations can however also affect more than one ‘letter’. Genetic tests look at specific chromosomes, genes or proteins, and the variations that occur within them, to make observations about disease or disease risk, body processes or physical traits. 

Are gene variations bad?

In general, variations should not be considered good or bad. Rather, genetic variations are simply slight differences in the genetic code. The key is to know which form of the variation you carry so that you can make appropriate lifestyle choices. And that is the beauty of genetic testing. It can tell you more about the way you're built so that you can tailor your lifestyle to fit your biology.