By Sarah Kinonen. Photos: Getty Images.
In the U.S. alone, an estimated 50 million (yes, millions) people are diagnosed with acne every year. Which means that, by now, there should be at least one product on the market that effectively combats breakouts for good — right? Technically speaking, there are loads of creams, serums, and treatments to topically tame inflammation and irritation brought on by the acne bacteria. But as those who have really suffered with the condition know, sometimes your best bet may be fighting it from within. There's the internal retinoid vitamin A derivative, Isotretinoin, or Accutane, but as we've reported, that has a long list of pros and cons. And there's also oral antibiotics — and it's that approach that recently had a major breakthrough.
Drug giants Allergan and Paratek Pharmaceuticals have come together to bring you the latest acne antibiotic option, Sarecycline. The two companies have reported the positive completion of two Phase 3 trials. (The FDA requires four stages of clinical trials before it will approve or deny a new drug; Phase 3 requires the drug be given to "large groups of people to confirm its effectiveness, monitor side effects, compare it to commonly used treatments, and collect information that will allow the drug or treatment to be used safely.")
And Sarecycline, a once-daily, oral, narrow-spectrum tetracycline-derived antibiotic, for the treatment of moderate to severe acne, did just that. "This is a narrow-spectrum antibiotic, which is effective against specific families of bacteria," says New York City-based dermatologist Dendy Engelman. "In this case, it's targeted to treat specific acne-causing bacteria." Which means, that there will soon be yet another oral option — following in the footsteps of Doxycycline and Minocycline — to stop the acne bacteria in its red, flaming tracks.
Along with killing bacteria at its source, during the trials, researchers found that Sarecycline was evaluated for the treatment of rosacea, a skin condition characterized by redness and visible blood vessels, thanks to the drug's anti-inflammatory properties. So while it cleared participants' breakouts, it also rid their complexions of redness, too. Cool.
But back to the acne. No matter your preferred method of fighting flareups — antibiotic, vaccine, or topical treatment — Tanzi recommends a combination of all of the above as the most potent prevention cocktail. "Since acne is a skin condition that is a culmination of issues — think oil production, clogged pores, bacterial overgrowth, and systemic inflammation — it makes sense to treat it with a combination approach," Tanzi tells Allure. "This is something that has been done by dermatologists for years and will continue to be the best approach." No argument here. Some of our favorites? The Best of Beauty-winning Clinique Acne Solutions Clinical Clearing Gel or the Neutrogena Rapid Wrinkle Repair Night Moisturizer.
There's no word yet when Sarecycline will be available from your doctor. A release from both companies does state that based on the results of Phase 3, a New Drug Application (NDA) will be filed to the FDA in the second half of this year. We'll update you here as more information becomes available.
This story originally appeared on Allure.
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