Double Blind Study Finds Spironolactone Effective in Fighting Acne Interview with:
Prof. Miriam Santer
Professor of Primary Care Research
Primary Care Research Centre
School of Primary Care, Population Sciences and Medical Education (PPM)
Faculty of Medicine
University of Southampton, Southampton What is the background for this study?

Response: Spironolactone has been used for the treatment of acne in women for many years, but with surprisingly little evidence from randomised trials regarding its effectiveness. This lack of evidence meant that, although it was in some national prescribing guidelines, it wasn’t in most guidelines, leading to uncertainty amongst prescribers and frustration for women trying to access this treatment.

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Colorism Can Lead to Use of Potentially Harmful Skin Lightening Products Interview with:
Roopal V Kundu, MD
Associate Dean for Admissions
Jacob R. Suker, MD, Professor of Medical Education
Professor of Dermatology (Medical Dermatology and Medical Education What is the background for this study? What is ‘colorism”

Response: The study stemmed from patient interactions in clinics where some patients were coming in requesting to lighten their skin. In trying to understand this better, we learned that colorism – a type of shadeism – in which people of a certain ethnic group are treated differently based on their darker skin color – was a psychosocial and socio-cultural factor effecting skin tone preferences.

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Study Evaluates Effect of a Biofilm Disrupting Acne Cream on Mild-to-Moderate Facial Acne

Jonathan S. Dosik, MD
Principal Investigator
TKL Research, Inc.
Fair Lawn, New Jersey What is the background for this study?

Response: Bacterial biofilms are communities of bacteria that adhere to a wide variety of surfaces, held together by polymer matrices composed of polysaccharides, secreted proteins, and extracellular DNA.  Biofilms may penetrate into the sebum and act as an adhesive, promoting formation of microcomedones.  On the skin, bacteria adhere to the surface of the pilosebaceous unit, secreting a protective physical polysaccharide barrier which provides resistance to antimicrobial therapies. Resistance to conventional antimicrobial treatment is not only due to the physical barrier created by the rapidly established biofilm, but also the expression of hundreds of new proteins.  These proteins facilitate biofilm development by enabling bacterial surface attachment as well as clustering and secretion of extracellular polysaccharides.

Next Science, LLC. has developed acne cream products with formulations based on a material science approach which target both the biofilm and the bacteria entrenched within. This novel biofilm eradicating technology attacks biofilms in three ways:

  1. Breaks the ionic bridges that hold the biofilm together,
  2. Solubilizes the individual polymers, exposing the bacteria,
  3. Directly kills bacteria by cell lysis.
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Effects of Acne and Acne Scarring Can Last Decades Interview with:
Jerry Tan, MD
Western University Canada
Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry
Windsor, Ontario, Canada

Dr. Tan  What is the background for this study?  What are the main findings?

Response: Acne was personified as an unwanted intruder responsible for negative self-image and emotional impairment What should readers take away from your report?

Response: The burden of acne can extend across long durations of life (adolescence to adulthood),

Scarring Acne: DermNet image

With acne scarring, this adverse impact persists along with a expressions of resignation and acceptance.

Disclosures: Advisor, consultant, speaker and/or trialist for Bausch, Boots Walgreens, Cipher, Cutera, Galderma, L’Oreal, Pfizer, Novartis, Sun


Tan J, Chavda R, Leclerc M, Dréno B. Projective Personification Approach to the Experience of People With Acne and Acne Scarring—Expressing the Unspoken. JAMA Dermatol. Published online July 20, 2022. doi:10.1001/jamadermatol.2022.2742


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Acne Scars: Trial Tests Microneedling With Insulin and Vitamin C Interview with:
Mohamed L. Elsaie, MD
Senator at the Egyptian Senate
Professor of Dermatology, NRC, Egypt
Fellow of the University of Miami; USA

Prof. Elsaie  What is the background for this study? 

Response: Post acne scars following sebaceous injury and abnormal wound healing during the course of acne is a prevalent and challenging to treat condition To evaluate microneedling by dermapen with topical vitamin C versus microneedling with topical insulin in treating atrophic post-acne scars.

A split-face comparative study included 30 subjects with atrophic post-acne scars. Human insulin was topically applied to the left side of the face and on the right side, vitamin C serum was applied.

Spironolactone for Acne: Study Evaluates Risk of Cancer Interview with:
John S. Barbieri, M.D., M.B.A.
Director, Advanced Acne Therapeutics Clinic
Department of Dermatology
Brigham and Women’s Hospital

John S. Barbieri
Dr. Barbieri  What is the background for this study? 

Response: While spironolactone is an effective treatment for women with acne that can potentially reduce our reliance on oral antibiotics, concerns have been raised regarding whether spironolactone may be associated with increased risk of cancer, such as breast cancer. As a result, we performed a systematic review and meta-analysis to better understand whether spironolactone use is associated with increased cancer risk.

Adult Women Describe Impact of Acne on Their Personal and Professional Lives Interview with:
John S. Barbieri, M.D., M.B.A.
University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine
Now practicing at: Brigham and Women’s Hospital

John S. Barbieri
Dr. Barbieri  What is the background for this study?

Response: Nearly 50% of women experience acne in their 20s and 35% experience acne in their 30s. While several qualitative studies have examined acne in adolescence, the lived experience of adult female acne has not been explored in detail.

As a result, we conducted a series of semi-structured interviews among 50 adult women with acne to examine the lived experience of adult acne and its treatment.

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A New Tazarotene 0.045% Lotion Formulation for Moderate-to-Severe Acne: Efficacy and Safety in Phase 2 and Phase 3 Clinical Trials Interview with:
Emil A. Tanghetti, MD
ARAZLO study investigator
Founder, Center for Dermatology and Laser Surgery
Sacramento, California What is the background for this study? How does ARAZLO™ differ from other forms of retinoids?  

Dr. Tanghetti: Topical tazarotene 0.1% is approved for the treatment of acne vulgaris, though skin irritation and other skin reactions may limit use of some gel, foam, and cream formulations.1,2 Arazlo (tazarotene 0.045%) lotion was developed utilizing polymeric emulsion technology, allowing for rapid and uniform distribution of tazarotene, humectants, and moisturizers on the skin.1,2 This highly spreadable lotion formulation was developed to allow for more efficient delivery of tazarotene into dermal layers while reducing the potential for skin irritation.1,2

A phase 2 study and two phase 3 studies demonstrated the efficacy and safety of tarazarotene 0.045%.1

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Novel Polymeric Tazarotene 0.045% Lotion for Moderate-to-Severe Acne: Pooled Phase 3 Analysis by Race Interview with:
Dr. Linda Stein Gold MD

Director, Dermatology Clinical Research
Henry Ford Health System

Dr. Stein Gold: Patients of color have an increased risk of acne and inflammation-related sequalae, including post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH) associated with acne resolution or irritation from treatment. Traditional topical retinoids, such as tazarotene, treat acne by inhibiting multiple inflammatory pathways and normalizing desquamation. However, skin irritation and other skin reactions may limit the use of some tazarotene gel and cream formulations. However, ARAZLO, a low dose tazarotene 0.045% lotion approved in 2020 utilizes polymeric emulsion technology, which makes it a highly spreadable lotion that allows for efficient delivery of tazarotene into dermal layers while reducing the potential for skin irritation.

In two phase 3, double-blind, 12-week studies, participants with moderate-to-severe acne were randomized 1:1 to tazarotene 0.045% lotion or vehicle lotion. This pooled, post hoc analysis included subsets of participants segmented by white or black race. Coprimary endpoints were inflammatory/noninflammatory lesion counts and treatment success, which was defined by at least a 2-grade reduction from baseline in the Evaluator’s Global Severity Score (EGSS) and an EGSS that was “clear” or “almost clear.” Treatment-emergent adverse events (TEAEs) and cutaneous safety and tolerability were also evaluated.

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YouTube Inundated with Bloggers Giving Advice on How to Fight Acne Interview with:
Melissa Nickles BA
University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine
Chicago, IL

Melissa Nickles BA  What is the background for this study?

Response: In today’s age, social media is becoming a growing force on our daily lives. This impacts healthcare in numerous ways. Many patients obtain health information, either knowingly or unknowingly, from social media. Teenageers are particularly vulnerable to misinformation on social media. Given the prevalence of health information provided on social media, oftentimes from non-professional sources, we chose to evaluate recommendations for acne therapies on YouTube.

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