Authors Guy German and Alexandrai Gasperini exposed a film made of salmon sperm DNA, water and ethanol to UVA and UVB rays to discover its response to radiation, finding that up to 90 percent of UVB light was blocked by the DNA sample.
“Ultraviolet light can actually damage DNA, and that’s not good for the skin,” German told The Telegraph. “We thought, let’s flip it. What happens instead if we actually used DNA as a sacrificial layer? So instead of damaging DNA within the skin, we damage a layer on top of the skin?”
What’s more, the longer the exposure to radiation, the greater the crosslinking density of the molecules, revealed German, suggesting that the protective barrier becomes stronger over time.
The discovery could lead to the development of a ‘second skin’ sunscreen that does not need to be reapplied.