For many years the formation of reactive oxygen and nitrogen species (ROS) and (RNS) in living organisms has been considered to be dangerous phenomenon due to their damaging action on biomolecules. However, present studies demonstrated another important activity of ROS and RNS: their signaling functions in physiological and pathological processes. In this work we discuss the new data concerning a role of ROS and RNS in many enzymatic/gene cascades causing damaging changes during the development of skin diseases and pathological disorders (skin cancer, the toxic effects of irradiation on the skin, and skin wounding). It has been suggested that the enhancement of ROS formation in tumor cells through the inactivation of mitochondrial MnSOD or the activation of NADPH oxidase leads to apoptosis and might be applied for developing a new cancer therapy. On the other hand ROS overproduction might stimulate malignant transformation of melanoma. Role of ROS signaling is also considered in the damaging action of UVA, UVB, and IRA irradiation on the skin and the processes of wound healing. In the last part of review the possibility of the right choice of antioxidants and free radical scavengers for the treatment of skin disease is discussed.
Keywords: ROS, RNS, skin cancer, UV irradiation, wound healing
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