Steven Feldman, MD, PhD, professor of dermatology at Wake Forest School of Medicine, discusses what makes clascoterone (Winlevi) different from past acne treatments.
Clascoterone cream 1% is a first-in-class topical androgen receptor inhibitor recently launched in the United States to treat acne vulgaris. Here, Steven Feldman, MD, PhD, professor of dermatology at Wake Forest School of Medicine, discusses what makes clascoterone, sold as Winlevi, different from past acne treatments.
What makes clascoterone different from past topical acne treatments?
Winlevi is different from previously available topical acne treatments in its mechanism of action being an anti-androgen. We have topical retinoids that affect the keratinization of hair follicles, we have a variety of different topical antibiotics and anti-infectives, but we didn't have anything before that directly addressed the role of androgens in the skin. Part of the reason this is the first maybe new mechanism of action, arguably, is that a lot of the development has been on mechanisms actions that we already knew worked like topical retinoids.
How does clascoterone address sebum production, and since it is the first new acne therapy in decades, how do you think it will affect quality of life?
Acne generally appears during adolescence when our hormones start raging, and the sebum production is related to that hormone production. Blocking the androgens in the skin helps reduce the sebum production. Our face is how we present ourselves to others, so having acne lesions on the face can be very impactful for people, especially those people who are concerned about how others perceive them.
Transcript edited for clarity.