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May 1957

The Experimental Production of Acne by Penta- and Hexachloronaphthalenes

Author Affiliations


From the Department of Dermatology (Dr. Donald M. Pillsbury, Director), University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.

AMA Arch Derm. 1957;75(5):689-695. doi:10.1001/archderm.1957.01550170057010

The experimental production of disease often permits close controlled observation denied the student of naturally occurring clinical states. In the past, we have successfully employed this experimental approach to the problems of miliaria, tinea capitis, hidradenitis suppurativa, and contact dermatitis.1-4 The present report outlines our gross and microscopic observations on acne induced by the repeated topical application of an acneigenic naphthalene. The following section presents the salient findings of the natural history of this experimental acne in Man.


Thirty-one normal healthy white and Negro male adults from 25 to 35 years of age served as subjects. These men presented no evidence of acne at the beginning of the test. The study was divided into three parts.

1. Acneigenic Properties of Various Chloronaphthalenes.—The following chloronaphthalenes were applied daily to the pinna of the ear for 30 days. Each compound was tested on three men in a

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