Scientists Planning To Start Clinical Trial Of Acne Vaccine On Humans In Next Few Years


Several adolescents and adults need to constantly battle acne issues, which often causes them distress. Scores of natural and chemical-based products are available in the market to counter acne — the most common skin problem all over the world.

However, a cure is possible for this persistent problem if the trial of a new acne vaccine proves to be successful. Scientists at the University of California, San Diego, have been working to find a solution for this skin problem, which mainly surfaces when one hits puberty.

Vaccine For Acne?

According to the NHS (the national healthcare system of England, Scotland, and Wales), almost 80 percent people between the ages of 11 years and 30 years worldwide suffer from this nagging skin problem.

"Acne is caused, in part, by P. acnes bacteria that are with you your whole life — and we couldn't create a vaccine for the bacteria because, in some ways, P. acnes are good for you," stated Eric C. Huang, the lead researcher of the study, to Allure magazine.

Huang shared that scientists have discovered an antibody for a toxin protein that the P. acnes bacteria secrete on the skin, which is the largest organ in the human body. This same toxic protein leads to inflammation, which in turn causes acne to appear on one's skin.

In layman terms, the vaccine tries to prevent the acne-causing effects of the microbes without harming, or killing them. The vaccine has already been put to test. Skin biopsies gathered from patients suffering from acne have been tested with the vaccine, and the results are quite promising.

The scientists are now looking toward starting the first phase of the vaccine's clinical trial in the next two years.

Acne Problems: Americans Are Not Alone

According to Allure, 50 million Americans suffer from acne every year. Acne specialist Joshua Zeichner stated that the number of acne cases in adult women is surprisingly increasing each year.

The startling numbers are not isolated to United States. Roughly 85 percent Australians and New Zealanders suffer from the same complication.

It has been observed that even in Australia and New Zealand, increasing number of women in their 20s to 40s are suffering from acne. It can be a small spot, a blackhead, or even pustules.

Also the fact that until now, scientists were clueless as to why this problem was occurring, somewhat justifies the absence of a proper cure for this issue.

Acne And Its Areas Of Attack

Acne is commonly found on the face, chest, and on the back of our body. An acne growth can be a whitehead, blackhead, pustules, papules, nodules, or cysts.

People suffering from acne are strongly advised against squeezing the spots, or clearing out the blackheads, as doing so may cause permanent scarring of the skin. Forceful removal can also make the acne attack worse and also damages the skin quality.

Photo: Caitlin Regan | Flickr 

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