Certain saturated and unsaturated fatty acids are reported to have antifungal activity.1,2 Of these, undecylenic acid and its zinc salt have been used most widely in this field. The effectiveness of undecylenic acid preparations is limited in those cases where increased penetration and keratolytic action are required. In an attempt to find a compound which meets these additional requirements, sulfur and pelargonic acid were combined. Sulfur has been extensively used as a "fungicidal" and keratolytic agent for many years, but its chemical behavior with unsaturated fatty acids prevents its combination with undecylenic acid. The saturated nine-carbon fatty acid, pelargonic acid,1-3 whose antifungal activity equals that of undecylenic acid, was combined with sulfur because reactivity is not a problem with this combination.
The sulfur (Thylox) was a fine-particle (1μ-3μ) highly reactive material obtained from coal-gas purification. It has demonstrated its advantages in preparations, such as soap and acne
BERESTON ES. Antimycotic Cream and Powder: Clinical Evaluation. AMA Arch Derm. 1959;80(4):482–483. doi:10.1001/archderm.1959.01560220092019
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