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The First Acne Treatment With a New Mechanism of Action in 40 Years Is Almost Here—Here’s What Derms Have to Say

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The First Acne Treatment With a New Mechanism of Action in 40 Years Is Almost Here—Here’s What Derms Have to Say featured image
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When it comes to acne-treatment innovation, Fort Lauderdale, FL dermatologist Dr. Matthew J. Elias describes the field as mainly the “same repurposing of medical and light/laser treatments for many years.”

But 2021 may mix that up—as there’s a new FDA-approved topical that comes with promises of hitting the market early this year: “Fortunately, we may be on the harbinger of new treatments led by Winlevi (clascoterone), which is an androgen receptor inhibitor and essentially affects the hormonal component of acne while being safe to use in both males and females,” he says.

Saddle Brook, NJ dermatologist Dr. Frederic Haberman is also excited about the new treatment, which is in a cream form intended to be applied twice a day to the affected areas. “It will be the first acne treatment with a new mechanism of action in 40 years. This new medication offers a non-antibiotic approach to people with acne, by targeting the androgen receptors directly in the skin.”

As Dr. Haberman explains, it’s the targeting of androgen hormonal activity in the skin that will be a “game-changer” for fighting acne. “It is a first-in-class topical androgen receptor inhibitor that tackles the androgen hormone component in both males and females. Androgen receptor inhibitors act by limiting the effects of these hormones in acne on increasing sebum production and inflammation.”

While the exact date of when Winlevi will be available is not clear at this time, it is sure to be an anticipated solution for the 50 million Americans the skin condition affects, annually, and the brand is offering updates on its site regarding timing.

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