EXCEL Selective suppression of cells for the safety of cosmetic ingredients

The Excel project aims to develop new compounds to chemically ‘extinguish’ two target proteins: the first is responsible for the formation of sensitisers, and the second, which is present in skin, targets endocrine disruptors. Through its technological innovations, it seeks to contribute to making the introduction of new cosmetic substances on the market completely safe.

The introduction of new cosmetic substances with no risk to the health of consumers

Selective suppression of cells for the safety of cosmetic ingredients

The cosmetics industry has recently had to face increasingly complex conditions for placing its products on the market. The only way of identifying and quantifying the impact of a substance on the consumer that is recognised today by the regulatory agencies is by evaluating the effects of that product on cellular models and defining the AOPs (adverse outcome pathways), which can be likened to ‘cards’ representing mechanisms of toxicity by identifying the molecular players involved in the various cellular signalling pathways. This is why this research project on selective cell suppression is so important.

Qualifying with certainty the metabolisation of active ingredients and compounds in cosmetic formulations

The use of these chemically ‘knocked out’ (KO) biological systems will allow us to determine the target’s involvement in a metabolic pathway and the likelihood of it activating a cellular signalling pathway that could present a risk to the consumer’s health.Qualifying the metabolisation of active substances and ingredients in cosmeticsThis KO status will be obtained via the design and validation of PROTACs (proteolysis targeting chimera) for the targets in question.
These models will also allow us to characterise known ingredients and formulations by substantiating/characterising their toxicological profile, which will make it possible to predict any interactions between the ingredients of a formula.

Project partners 2 ACADEMIC laboratories
  • ICOA (UMR7311 –University of ORLÉANS/ CNRS)
  • Starlight, OLIVET (45)
  • 2 post-doctoral researchers (one in chemistry, one in modelling)
  • 1 research engineer


K€ over 3 years

for regional (ARD CVL)

Contact Sylvain ROUTIER ICOA (UMR3711 –University of ORLÉANS/ CNRS) sylvain.routier@univ-orleans.fr