DaVinci Laboratories - DaVinci Laboratories

Collagen Bright™

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A Unique Tripeptide Collagen Formulation for Youthful Skin and Healthy Aging


One of the most common concerns of the aging population is dry, wrinkled skin that has lost its hydration and elasticity. Nearly 34% of people in the United States are aged 50 or older, and by 2030, the number of people aged 65 and older is expected to increase by 65%.1 A clinically proven collagen formula that promotes beautiful, hydrated skin while nourishing other collagen-dependent organs could be a powerful solution for the aging population.*

Collagen is a critical component of healthy skin, as well as the joints, bones, and blood vessels.* Its remarkable effects on aging skin led DaVinci Laboratories to develop Collagen Bright™, a formula containing a highly bioavailable, very low molecular weight collagen tripeptide called Morikol®, which is 15x better absorbed than other collagens. Its low molecular weight and high tripeptide concentration more effectively produce healthy aging results at a fraction of the dose.* Clinical studies with Morikol® collagen show it improves skin hydration, skin roughness, smoothness, and increases skin elasticity, thereby minimizing wrinkles, fine lines, and crow’s feet.* This type of collagen has some unique advantages that will be discussed here along with supporting evidence.

How Skin Changes as We Age

A number of factors are involved in the aging of human skin. These factors include photoaging caused by exposure to ultraviolet light from the sun and biological aging. Hallmarks of photoaged skin include coarse wrinkles, dryness, pigmentation, and loss of elasticity.

Exposure to ultraviolet light can have a significant effect on skin health as indicated by studies comparing facial skin exposed to the sun and skin on the buttocks, which is protected from the sun.2 In skin that’s been severely photodamaged by sun exposure, elastic fibers become extremely unorganized in many places throughout the dermis.3-5 In skin that’s only mildly damaged from the sun, there is a loss of fibril in microfibrils from the dermis.3-5 The photoaging from solar UV radiation leads to loss of collagen and elastic fibers. These effects combined with a reduction in the production of hyaluronic acid (HA) can over time result in the formation of wrinkles, dry skin, and loss of elasticity.6

Intrinsic skin aging is also a primary factor in skin health. As we age, cellular function weakens and damage from reactive oxygen species, a normal byproduct of cellular metabolism, accumulates.7 Unlike severe photoaging from sun damage, intrinsic skin damage is characterized by a gradually fragmented elastic-fiber network,3-5 ultimately leading to reduced hydration and elasticity.

The extracellular matrix of the skin is comprised of collagen, elastic fibers, and HA. Collagen may make up more than 70% of the dry weight of normal human skin dermis, which is comprised of two distinct layers.6 The adventitial dermis is made up of thin collagenous fibers and the reticular dermis of thick, coarse collagen bundles.8 Skin elastic fibers, which are critical to the skin’s elasticity and resilience, are comprised of an inner part of crosslinked elastin and outer layers of fibril within micro fibrils.9  A nutritional formula to address both intrinsic and extrinsic skin health should therefore supply the building blocks for healthy, youthful skin and support the biochemical changes of aging.*


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What Is Collagen?

Collagen is a protein that plays a critical role in the structure and function of skin, bone, cartilage, and tendons. Collagen essentially holds the body together. It accounts for about a third of all proteins in the human body. Its production declines with age, leaving the elderly more vulnerable to connective tissue problems. Factors such as exposure to UV light from the sun and cigarette smoke can cause a decline in collagen levels.

Oral administration of collagen in humans has supported joint health, bone density, healthy blood pressure, increasing the moisture content of the stratum corneum of the skin, and circulatory system health.*10,11 Specifically, ingestion of 10 grams of collagen hydrolysate daily has been shown to support the health of the knee and hip.*10 It also stopped the breakdown of collagen in bone.10 Furthermore, oral collagen improved arterial and vascular health.*11 Collagen hydrosylates also encourage hyaluronic acid synthesis, thus protecting joint cartilage.*12

Collagen itself is less allergenic than other proteins.13 It is present in the skin, bones, and scales of pigs, cattle, and fish, and has biocompatibility and bioactivity in the skin of humans, so it is a food that can be safely consumed.13 However, one drawback of collagen supplementation is that high dosages are necessary to obtain any benefit (up to 10 grams per day for dermatological health*).10,14

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A Highly Bioavailable Low-Molecular Weight Collagen

Morikol® is a highly bioavailable fish-sourced nutrient supplying very low molecular weight (1500 Da) collagen peptides (LMWCP). It is a type 1 collagen hydrosylate prepared by enzymatic hydrolysis yielding greater than 15% content of tripeptides. Other collagen brands have a molecular weight between 2,000 and 10,000 Da and non-meaningful concentrations of tripeptides (0% - 1%). Morikol® is uniquely concentrated to the tripeptide fraction Gly-X-Y, which is highly bioavailable. The X and Y stand for collagen-building amino acids such as hydroxyproline, proline, or alanine while glycine is present at every third position.15 The amino acid sequence, Gly-X-Y, is the minimum unit of collagen.

The higher tripeptide concentration and lower molecular weight of Morikol® is advantageous because it allows for greater biodistribution and rapid distribution in the skin.* This means that in studies investigating its effect on hydration and elasticity, only 1 gram per day was needed to have a beneficial effect.*6,13

The fact that Morikol® is sourced from fish is in itself advantageous since marine-derived collagen is smaller than larger, land-animal derived collagen hydrosylates. Combine this fact with the proprietary enzymatic process used to produce Morikol®, which further breaks down these already small protein chains, and the result is a collagen product that boasts superior bioavailability. It’s 15x better absorbed than other collagens.

Excellent Absorption in the Intestines


Morikol® tripeptides are not susceptible to breaking down in the stomach and pass into the intestines intact, where they are absorbed through peptide transporter 1 (PEPT1) receptors, which mediate the absorption and transportation of dipeptides and tripeptides in the intestinal epithelium. Tripeptides are known to systemically circulate in their free form, where they have exerted benefits similar to endogenous growth factors such as platelet derived and fibroblast growth factors.16 The dipeptides that are enzymatically cleaved from the tripeptides can also have benefits as they can stimulate the production of collagen-synthesizing cells known as fibroblasts.16

Both rat and human studies have shown that after oral intake of collagen tripeptide, both tripeptides and dipeptides can be detected in blood. This confirms that collagen peptides are transported in the bloodstream instead of being completely broken down into their single amino acid components.15,17 The collagen tripeptides were also found in skin, bone, and joint tissues.15

The excellent absorption of Morikol® tripeptides makes them an ideal substrate for skin tissue health and regeneration*. Research has found that Morikol® tripeptides can protect the skin from the photoaging effects of UV-B rays from sunlight.*18 It accomplishes this by reducing the synthesis of collagen-digesting enzymes known as matrix metalloproteinases  (MMPs) produced when keratinocytes are generated in sun-exposed skin.*18 The reduction of MMPs during sun exposure inhibits the breakdown of collagen.*18


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Three Modes of Action for Healthier Skin


To summarize, Morikol® has three important methods of action: collagen-building, collagen-stimulating, and inhibiting collagenase, the enzyme that breaks down collagen.* Morikol® supports collagen-building through direct fibroblast activation.* When 15% tripeptides are delivered directly to the plasma via the PEPT1 transporter, they can arrive at local sites of skin wear and tear.* Tripeptides and dipeptides increase chemotaxis of fibroblasts so that fibroblasts can promote skin health*12,16

Collagen stimulation occurs because Morikol® provides building free amino acid blocks for use in skin.* As shown by Shigemura and colleagues, single amino acids, particularly proline and hydroxyproline did not have any of the effects of their dipeptide or tripeptide precursors, yet they were available, as part of the overall amino acid pool, to be incorporated into collagen.* These amino acids are most commonly found in skin and make up the basic unit of collagen.*16

Finally, this unique collagen inhibits matrix metalloproteinases. MMPs are collagenases, or enzymes that degrade collagen.*18 By decreasing the activity of MMPs, Morikol® reduces collagen breakdown.*

Advantages of Morikol® Marine-Sourced Tripeptide Collagen


• 15x tripeptides of other collagen brands

• Superior bioavailability

• Triple Action: Collagen Building, Collagen Stimulating, Collagenase Inhibition*

• Clinically proven

• Low-molecular weight collagen peptide (LMWCP – 1500 Da average)

• Lower doses necessary: 1g/day for skin health, 2 g/day for joint support

• Marine-sourced

• Water-soluble

• Mild to no taste

• Generally regarded to have low immunogenicity compared to other proteins

• Well tolerated in clinical trials, with no reported side effects

Clinical Research of LMWCP – Skin Health


Study #1


A double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial published in the journal Nutrients, investigated the effects of LMWCP on wrinkles, hydration, and skin elasticity of 53 women aged 40 – 60 years.6 The women were randomly assigned to a group that received 1 gram of LMWCP plus 100 mg vitamin C once daily for 12 weeks or a placebo. The results were determined by a visual assessment conducted by a dermatologist and by instrumental measurement. The results indicated:


  • After six weeks and 12 weeks, skin hydration values were notably higher in the LMWCP group compared with the placebo group.*


  • After 12 weeks, three parameters of skin wrinkling (skin roughness, average skin roughness, and smoothness depth) were significantly reduced in the LMWCP group and visual assessment score also significantly improved from baseline, whereas the placebo group didn’t experience significant improvement in any of these parameters.*


  • In the LMWCP group after 12 weeks, skin elasticity also significantly improved both compared with baseline and compared with the placebo group.*


  • Crow’s feet as evaluated by visual assessment significantly improved in the LMWCP group compared to placebo at 12 weeks.*


Study #2


Another double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study was published in the Journal of the Korean Society of Food Science and Nutrition.13 The study investigated the impact LMWCP containing 3% glycine-proline–hydroxyproline on skin wrinkles, elasticity, and hydration. Scientists randomly assigned 105 women, aged 40 to 60 years old with crow’s feet and wrinkles, to receive either 1 gram or 1.5 grams collagen peptides once daily for 12 weeks.


Compared to the placebo group, visual evaluations by dermatologists of the skin revealed significantly reduced average roughness and crow’s feet wrinkles at 12 weeks in both the 1 gram and 1.5 gram groups.* Skin hydration and elasticity also improved significantly in the collagen groups.*


Clinical Research of LMWCP – Joint Health


Comfortable joints are another important concern of the aging population. Joint health is closely tied to the health of cartilage cells, which synthesize collagen and proteoglycans. Maintaining the health of joints is critical for the elderly to pursue activities of daily living and quality of life.


Due to the importance of collagen in supporting joint health, researchers conducted both a study of collagen tripeptide in rabbits and a double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized clinical trial in healthy human subjects.19 The rabbit study showed that the collagen tripeptide was absorbed into the joint cartilage and the animals given collagen tripeptide had significantly healthier cartilage.* In the human study, the collagen tripeptide led to improvements in joint health including reduced hydrops and friction sounds, as well as enhanced quality of life.*19


Complementary Ingredients in Collagen Bright™

 In Collagen Bright™, Morikol® is combined with synergistic ingredients that together can lead to healthy skin*.


Hyaluronic Acid

 Hyaluronic acid (HA) works with collagen in the extracellular matrix of the skin. HA’s hydrophilic structure makes it an important moisturizing factor.* It possesses excellent water retention abilities and is therefore important to maintaining skin moisture.* Sodium hyaluronate is included in Collagen Bright™ as a source of hyaluronic acid.


Vitamin C

Vitamin C is a normal skin constituent with high concentrations in the dermis and epidermis.20 Vitamin C is known for its ability to enhance collagen production, and research has shown that vitamin C-enriched gelatin increases collagen production after exercise*21 On the other hand, vitamin C inadequacy leads to impairment in collagen synthesis.22 Its antioxidant activity may help with UV related impact on the skin.*23 Collagen also must have optimal levels of vitamin C to maintain strong arterial and blood vessel walls.*



Biotin supplementation can lead to firmer and stronger nails, both in animals and humans.*24 Biotin is also frequently used to promote healthy hair.* It works together with Morikol®, which provides the amino acids and other nutrients needed to fuel hair growth.*



This medicinal fungus, used in traditional Chinese medicine, keeps human skin cells healthy during exposure to ultraviolet light.*25,26 It inhibits photoaging of the skin after exposure to sunlight.* Cordyceps protects skin from free radical and DNA effects that come with daily wear and tear.* It may provide healthy aging benefits for skin.*27 

The Collagen Bright™ Advantage

Collagen Bright™ by DaVinci Laboratories is a unique and pure source of collagen that is highly bioavailable to the skin and other collagen-rich tissues. The Morikol® collagen in the formula is derived from warm water fish (tilapia), a traceable, kosher marine source. It has undergone rigorous testing for heavy metals and antibiotics, to validate its purity and cleanliness. Morikol® has a neutral taste and odor and is water soluble. It has been tested for the presence of, and found to be free of, bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) and foot-and-mouth disease (FMD). Its unique tripeptide formulation builds and stimulates collagen and inhibits collagenase.* In clinical trials, Morikol® exhibited no side effects and was well tolerated.6,13


The formula combines Morikol® with the synergistic ingredient’s hyaluronic acid, vitamin C, biotin, and Cordyceps. The formula’s high bioavailability gives it an effectiveness unmatched by other collagen formulas.



 Collagen Bright™ presents a novel healthy aging option for skin that is dry, rough, wrinkled, or sun-damaged.* It features a clinically proven, superior form of collagen called Morikol®, which is highly bioavailable and enriched in 15% tripeptides. The result is a collagen that is better absorbed and has 15x more clinically active tripeptides than other collagens. These bioavailable collagen tripeptides arrive in the bloodstream and tissues where they can promote skin, joint, and cardiovascular health.* Human studies have confirmed that Morikol® improves all of the parameters of healthy, beautiful skin – skin hydration, elasticity, roughness, smoothness depth – and ultimately it minimizes fine lines, wrinkles, and crow’s feet.* Collagen BrightTM combines this remarkable form of collagen with other vital skin nutrients such as hyaluronic acid, vitamin C, biotin, and Cordyceps for a comprehensive formula that protects, nourishes, and rebuilds skin from the inside out.*




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  27. Park JM, Lee JS, Lee KR, Ha SJ, Hong EK. Cordyceps militaris extract protects human dermal fibroblasts against oxidative stress-induced apoptosis and premature senescence. Nutrients. 2014;6(9):3711-3726.