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December 1989

Will 1,25-Dihydroxyvitamin D3, MC 903, and Their Analogues Herald a New Pharmacologic Era for the Treatment of Psoriasis?

Author Affiliations

Vitamin D, Skin, and Bone Research Laboratory Boston University School of Medicine 80 E Concord, M-1013 Boston, MA 02118

Arch Dermatol. 1989;125(12):1692-1697. doi:10.1001/archderm.1989.01670240092022

Psoriasis remains the scourge for at least 50 million people worldwide. Although there are a variety of therapies available to patients with this affliction including methoxsalen plus ultraviolet light (PUVA), methotrexate, UVB light, topical and intralesional corticosteroids, retinoids, and cyclosporine, to date there is no truly safe and effective therapy for this often debilitating disease.1,2 From a historical perspective, many treatments for this affliction have resulted from folklore medicine, or serendipitous empirical observations. The cause for psoriasis is unknown, although the proximate event is a hyperproliferation of the epidermis.3 As a result, most therapies have been designed to in some way alter the proliferative activity of epidermal cells, but in the manner that is often harmful to them. The recent development of retinoids for the treatment of psoriasis suggested the possibility of developing drugs that have specific physiologic and pharmacologic actions on epidermal cells. However, enthusiasm for retinoids

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