7 Up and Coming Acne Treatments

Written by on February 19, 2010 in Acne Treatments with 4 Comments

A recent abstract has highlighted some new acne treatments that perhaps many haven’t heard of before.  As these treatments might not be on the radar for rosacea sufferers I thought it might be useful to highlight them here.

Veteran rosacea sufferers will know that many acne treatments are too harsh for rosacea sufferers. Experience seems to show though, that some rosacea sufferers can tolerate acne treatments and may even see some benefits for the papules and pustules of their rosacea.

Picolinic Acid

Touted as “a novel zinc finger therapy”, piolinic acid, was reported to be effective in the treatment of mild-to-moderate acne vulgaris in 20 subjects receiving 10% picolinic acid gel twice daily to the face over 12 weeks, of which 15 patients completed the 12-week open-label study

Topical Antibiotic Dapsone

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Aczone (dapsone) Gel, 5% for the topical treatment of acne vulgaris in patients 12 years and older. Aczone is also being promoted as a treatment for adult acne. This seems to confirm my thought that Allergan would like to market aczone as a rosacea treatment.

Systemic Zinc Salts

I found this topic tricky to research. There are plenty of resources that want to sell you zinc in many forms. What constitutes `emerging oral zinc therapy’ isn’t clear to me. Please post in the comments below if you know what the authors are referring to.

Could the author be referring to treating rosacea with zinc sulfate, where trialists were using zinc sulfate 220 mg bis for 90 days?

Oral Antibiotic Lymecycline

Lymecycline is an antibiotic from the tetracycline family. It is marketed by Galderma. It has been available since 1963 so it doesn’t seem that this is such a new or innovative treatment.

Synergistic combinations of Benzoyl Peroxide

Benzoyl Peroxide has been around for many years. One abstract I found suggested ;

A Current Review of Topical Benzoyl Peroxide: New Perspectives on Formulation and Utilization

As numerous clinical studies have shown, the combination of BPO plus a topical antibiotic is not only more effective but also is often better tolerated than either agent alone. Unlike antibiotics, no bacterial resistance has been noted. Adding BPO to any long-term antibiotic regimen in acne is generally recommended to help reduce populations of drug-resistant variants.

Photodynamic Therapy with topical photosensitizers

Photodynamic Therapy (PDT) has been covered several times before on this blog. This treatment looks to be useful to topical skin conditions, but it is not clear yet whether it is generally suitable as a rosacea treatment.

Potential Acne Vaccines

A 2008 paper in The Journal of Investigative Dermatology raises the possibility of a vaccine that allow the immune system to better react to exposure to P. acnes and also slow the growth of skin bacteria.

Acne Vaccines: Therapeutic Option for the Treatment of Acne Vulgaris?

Acne, one of the most common skin diseases, is caused by multiple factors, including Propionibacterium acnes. Studies suggest that responses to P. acnes by host immunity play important roles in its pathogenesis. Identifying immune modulators that attenuate inflammatory responses against P. acnes and the inhibition of bacterial growth may lead to novel avenues of immunologic intervention.

Here is the abstract of the paper covering the emerging treatments for acne.

Emerging drugs for acne, Expert Opin Emerg Drugs. 2009 Dec;14(4):649-59.

Acne vulgaris is a common skin disorder that affects most individuals at some point in their lives. It may result in significant morbidity, including cutaneous scarring and psychological impairment. Current treatments include topical retinoids, benzoyl peroxide, topical and systemic antibiotics, and systemic isotretinoin. There are growing concerns of rising antibiotic resistance, significant side effects of isotretinoin therapy, and lack of safe and effective treatment for pregnant females. Recent advances in the pathogenesis of acne have led to a greater understanding of the underlying inflammatory mechanisms and the role the Propionibacterium acnes and biofilms. This has led to the development of new therapeutic targets. This article reviews emerging treatments of acne, including topical picolinic acid, topical antibiotic dapsone, systemic zinc salts, oral antibiotic lymecycline, new formulations of and synergistic combinations of benzoyl peroxide, photodynamic therapy with topical photosensitizers and potential acne vaccines.

Your Thoughts

What do you think about acne treatments and your rosacea ? Do you think rosacea sufferers might be missing out on some options by ignoring treatments that are only promoted to treat acne ?

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About the Author

About the Author: David Pascoe started the Rosacea Support Group in October 1998. .

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4 Reader Comments

  1. Gillian says:

    My ACNE treatment I can only relate my own recent experience. After the last bad flare up I went to see a new dermatologist who replaced my original Dr. She prescribed SULFACET-R lotion. The accompanying monograph states that “it is used to help treat acne and other skin conditions (e.g. seborrheic dermatitis) This product contains an anti-bacterial agent as well as a dring agent which promotesshredding of the top layer of skin (keratolysis).” I read right through the nformation and no where does it mention rosacea. i have been using it for nearly 2 weeks and I am very pleased with the results —- so far ! Whether or not it is the effect of the lotion or it just happens that it has coincided with a sudden remission I don’t know but I am willing to keep on using it. Here in Ontario Canada, it is not covered by our health plan. I don’t know how long this little bottle will last , but I use a cotton bud to apply it to my face and it spreads easily and doesnt’ seem to use a lot for an application, so with a bit of luck it will be an affordable treatment.

  2. Thanks Gillian, I hope Sulfacet-R continues to work for you.

  3. Dave,

    You certainly are on top of things when it comes to rosacea. I have noticed that certain drugs for acne seem to be also used by physicians for rosacea, for example, Azelaic acid (Finacea) was initially used to treat acne but has now become one of the treatment options used by physicians in the armamentarium they have available. I think the reason for this is that there are more than double the number of acne sufferers than rosacea sufferers and therefore it is more profitable for pharmaceutical companies to spend research money on new treatments for acne than for rosacea. But since they have discovered that rosacea sufferers also benefit as you are pointing out in this article physicians may prescribe a new acne treatment hoping that it will work and unless some brave rosacea sufferers are willing to try these new treatments which you have collected (I am impressed with your research) we won’t know. No doubt some will be prescribed these acne treatments without knowing that acne treatments usually aggravate rosacea sufferers and may get some positive results. Surely we will hear if these new acne treatments coming down the pipeline will work for rosacea as well. Thanks for the article.

  4. Rose says:

    What can replace Accutane. After years of no improvements on antibiotics and topicals my doctor finally prescribed Accutane,within weeks I was a new person( I have moderate rosacea with acne) Every time I got off all symptoms returned.So I was put on daily low dose. Then it was taken off the market and my doctor moved. I have had laser treatments and too new oral prescriptions which did nothing. Please help.

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