Vitiligo Research & Studies

Recent Advances to Help Real Patients Like You

In recent years, there has been an increase in the amount of active research done on vitiligo, and dermatologists now have a better grasp of the condition’s natural history and distinct kinds.

Since there is no current known long-term cure, it is hopeful that advances in scientific knowledge will lead to more effective vitiligo therapies available in the future. Learn about some of the most significant and relevant scientific advances thanks to vitiligo research and studies below.

Make sure to check out the drug pipeline update to learn about the latest developments in vitiligo treatment.

Focused on Past, Present & Future Vitiligo Discoveries

Many doctors, researchers, and biopharma companies are working to focus studies on the critical factors that can help close the knowledge gap, exploring topics such as:

  • What is the illness’s progression?
  • Vitiligo in segments
  • The efficacy of currently available treatments
  • How a variety of factors can cause vitiligo
  • The link between vitiligo and other diseases
  • Psychological impacts of vitiligo

Promising Results for Repigmentation

Research on JAK Inhibitors

Several recent studies have looked into a family of drugs known as JAK inhibitors as a potential new therapy option. JAK inhibitors target a hitherto untargeted type of immunological communication channel in vitiligo. These drugs are hypothesized to act by lowering inflammatory substances that contribute to disease progression and encourage melanocytes’ growth.

One such study looked at the JAK inhibitor tofacitinib, which was published in JAMA. Another looked at the JAK inhibitor ruxolitinib, which was published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. When the JAK inhibitor was used with UVB phototherapy, both studies indicated promising results for repigmentation in persons with vitiligo.

Though these early studies looked at small groups of patients, various larger-scale studies are being conducted to see if oral and topical JAK inhibitors can help with vitiligo. Preliminary results from these larger studies for repigmentation are promising, particularly on the face. 

The researchers are hopeful that these findings may lead to FDA approval of JAK inhibitors for vitiligo treatment. For the time being, these medications are rarely approved by insurance to treat vitiligo because they are still classified off-label by the FDA for use in vitiligo. As a result, they can also be rather costly.

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Important Findings

This poll found that both patients and healthcare providers agree that psychosocial therapies are necessary to treat vitiligo.

The survey authors are A Ahmed, E Steed, E Burden-Teh, R Shah, S Tour, S Sanyal, M Whitton, J Batchelor, A Bewley.

Recent Advances to Help Real Patients Like You

With scientific technology making strides and new discoveries every day, there is a future for vitiligo patients with repigmentation. Make sure to visit our blog to learn about the latest studies and developments in vitiligo treatments, medicine and more. 

Focused on Past, Present & Future Vitiligo Discoveries

Vitiligo Society Research Study

At the 2015 BAD meeting in Manchester, a poster based on the findings of a survey of patients and health professionals to explore psychological therapies for vitiligo was allowed for exhibition. Funding from the UK Dermatology Clinical Trials Network supported the research.

Many of their members will have participated in this poll, which has yielded valuable data to aid in developing innovative approaches to treating the psychological impact of vitiligo on people’s lives. Psychological therapies have been identified as a research priority in vitiligo treatment. Despite this, only one randomized experiment comparing group cognitive-behavioral treatment (CBT) to group person-centered therapy for vitiligo has been published.

Data Collection

Vitiligo patients answered online questionnaires, while health professionals involved in the care of vitiligo patients completed a second version. The patients’ survey collected personal information and centered on the impact of vitiligo on daily life. It also intended to determine the most challenging issues that patients experienced and which ways they believed would be beneficial in dealing with their vitiligo. 

Participants

100 vitiligo patients completed the patient questionnaire, 82% of whom experienced vitiligo for ten years or longer. 70% of those polled were female, and 92% were Caucasians (a similar proportion of the population in the national statistics). The poll was completed by 39 health professionals, with 67% of dermatologists and 15% of psychologists participating.

Results 

Acceptance of their vitiligo, the longevity of the disease, and dealing with humiliation were the most common concerns expressed by patients. Participating in sports and being exposed to the sun were also causes for concern. A study of healthcare professionals yielded similar results; however, the psychosexual disorders identified by them were not deemed as essential by the patients.

When it came to devising interventions, patients considered that mechanisms that helped them accept and comprehend vitiligo and cope with the disease’s shame in social circumstances were significant. Improving one’s self-confidence and self-esteem were other important considerations.

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