Laboratory Research

Mission Statement

To provide a sound scientific basis for the inclusion of unique or novel compounds into skin care formulations through a variety of testing methodologies in human cell cultures and help guide the development of the next generation of science based skin care products. The Institute also does preclinical testing of the effects of devices in vitro and ex vivo. The McDaniel Institute also evaluates patient and consumer education in all aspects of skin care, anti-aging and antioxidant science and nutrition.


The laboratory at the McDaniel Institute of Aging Research uses well validated in vitro techniques for testing compounds on cell cultures and analyzing gene expression, ELISA or other protein products, or histological results. Other testing models employed at MIAAR, involve bacterial cultures (e.g. acne), human skin equivalent model ex vivo and in vivo skin biopsies. Dr. McDaniel and his team have consulted on formulation, safety and efficacy testing for products and other proprietary compounds for large cosmetic firms.

Another area of expertise/emphasis is in the in vitro, ex vivo and in vivo testing of the effects of light relating to photodamage and anti-aging. Our lab has been involved in testing single and multi-wavelength LEDs, Ultraviolet light (and isolated components, i.e. UVA1, UVB,etc.), Infrared light and visible spectrum light on cultured cells, human skin equivalent models and human clinical subject biopsy samples.

The lab has been experimenting with the effects of both low-level lights from LED sources as well as clinical strength laser light.

The Institute is also interested in natural botanical ingredients and has experience in the testing and cultivation of sterile plant cultures and their application in combatting skin disorders.

Skin of Color Research

The Institute is also associated through Dr. McDaniel with the Hampton University Skin of Color Research Institute (Dr. McDaniel is one of the Founders and Co-Directors).

  • Photobiology Testing
    • HEV
    • Blue Visible
    • IRA
    • UVA -1
    • UVB
    • Custom NIST Certified Spectra Photometry for above light sources
  • Creation, growth, maintenance and testing of cell cultures (human and other)
  • RT-PCR
  • PCR based and cDNA microarrays (including custom microarrays)
  • Histological staining
  • Immunofluorescent staining and imaging of live cell staining and imaging
  • Cell toxicity/viability assays
  • ELISA protein quantitation
  • Image analysis
  • Gene to gene interactions
  • Invitro, ex vivo & in vivo Testing
  • Skin Biopsies
  • Antioxidants
  • Anti-aging
  • Senescence
  • Longevity/lifespan extension
  • Skin biochemistry
  • Botanical extracts
  • Melanogenesis
  • Hypertrophic Scars
  • Keloid formation
  • Interaction of light with cells (UVA1, UVB, IR, Visible light wavelengths)
  • BioRad CFX96Touch System
  • uQuant plate reader
  • DeNovix DS11+ Low Volume Spectrophotometer
  • Leica DMIRB inverted fluorescent microscope (Triple Filtered)
  • Nikon DS-Qi1Mc visible light microscopic camera
  • Nikon DS-Fi2 fluorescence microscopic camera
  • Dolan-Jenner Fiberlite 180 High Intensity Illuminator with select custom filters
  • Solar Simulators & Custom Filter Sets and Detectors with Dosing System