Photo: John Wang
Ava puhi
ETHNOBOTANY: This Ava puhi Mohi plant will provide an ingredient for a Nu Skin cosmeticeutical to be launched in March.
America's fascination with youth and physical beauty has prompted a rise in the development over recent years of "high-performance" cosmetics containing bioactive ingredients for skin damaged by the effects of sun and aging. Companies that produce personal-care products now are seeking new bioactive ingredients and new delivery system technologies. This demand is providing jobs for researchers in biopharmaceutical companies, but it also is causing headaches for government agencies faced with keeping track of products that often fall outside the control of safety and efficacy regulations.

"Cosmeceuticals" is the term used to describe cosmetics containing ingredients that are bioactive, exerting effects on people. The regulatory question is whether or not such ingredients make a product a drug rather than a cosmetic. Under the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act...

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