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UV nail polish dryers can damage DNA, mutate cells: Study

(WJW) – Ultraviolet lamps used to dry nail polish can potentially lead to serious health concerns, a new study finds.

According to a study published this month in the Nature Communications journal, the radiation emitted by UV nail polish dryers can cause damage to DNA and permanently mutate cells, which can lead to cancer.

The lamps are used to dry nail polish gels, which need UV radiation to harden. According to researchers, these devices emit UV wavelengths between 340 and 395 nm.

In the study, researchers exposed primary mouse embryonic fibroblasts, human foreskin fibroblasts and human epidermal keratinocytes to UV light.

The study claims that exposure to UV light for one 20-minute session caused 20% to 30% of exposed cells to die. Three consecutive 20-minute sessions caused 65% to 70% of cells to die, the study says.

The remaining cells in the study also suffered DNA damage and mutation.

Researchers say previous studies have shown that gene mutations will likely lead to a higher risk for cancer, and several reported cases have linked UV nail polish dryers to cancer.

“Taken together, our experimental results and the prior evidence strongly suggest that radiation emitted by UV-nail polish dryers may cause cancers of the hand and that UV-nail polish dryers, similar to tanning beds, may increase the risk of early-onset skin cancer,” the study says, in part.

Read the full study and its results here.

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