Novel immunomodulators for topical skin disease therapy

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

9 Scopus citations


The use of topical corticosteroids has revolutionised the treatment of inflammatory skin diseases. However, problems including pharmacological resistance, as well as the side effect profile of potent topical corticosteroids, has prompted studies to investigate into other topical non-corticosteroidal agents in inflammatory skin diseases. This review outlines the major types of inflammatory skin diseases and discusses emerging therapies based on topical immunosuppressive macrolide antibiotics. In particular, tacrolimus and ascomycin derivatives have been shown to be effective for treating atopic dermatitis with a surprising lack of side effects. It is expected that these agents will play an important role in future dermatological therapy. Accumulating evidence suggests the importance of lipid-derived mediators of inflammation (eicosanoids and platelet-activating factor) in cutaneous inflammatory diseases. The role of these mediators in skin inflammation is also addressed in this review. Though there appears to be a large amount of redundancy in the activities of these lipid mediators, this family of agents could potentially serve as targets for anti-inflammatory therapy. Inasmuch as the phospholipase A2 family of enzymes serve to synthesise both eicosanoids and platelet-activating factor, inhibition at this step could have important therapeutic benefits in designing therapy for inflammatory skin diseases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)529-542
Number of pages14
JournalExpert Opinion on Investigational Drugs
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jan 1 2000


  • ABT-281
  • Arachidonic acid
  • Atopic dermatitis
  • Clinical trials
  • Corticosteroids
  • Cyclooxygenase
  • Cyclosporin
  • Eicosanoids
  • ICI-204 219
  • Lipoxygenase
  • Phospholipase A
  • Platelet-activating factor
  • Psoriasis
  • SDM ASM 281-240
  • SDM ASM 981
  • Tacrolimus
  • Zileuton

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology

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