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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Effect of azelaic acid on human malignant melanoma.

In 23 patients with malignant melanoma, including some with metastases and terminal patients, topical and oral (10--15 g daily) azelaic acid given for 1--12 weeks before surgical excision of the lesions was followed by arrest and subsequent regression of the advancing edge of lesions, reduction in size and flattening of nodular areas, and progressive lightening of pigmentation. Histological and ultrastructural effects included: degeneration and disappearance of malignant epidermal and dermal melanocytes with reduction of junctional activity; epidermal proliferation and return towards normal organisation; reappearance of papillary dermis, pilosebaceous units, and sweat glands; separation of dermal melanoma tumour masses into smaller collections of cells by regenerating connective tissue; and increase in number of dermal mast cells, macrophages, and round cells. These preliminary results indicate a direct cytotoxic effect of azelaic acid on melanocytes of human melanoma.[1]


  1. Effect of azelaic acid on human malignant melanoma. Nazzaro-Porro, M., Passi, S., Zina, G., Bernengo, A., Breathnach, A., Gallagher, S., Morpurgo, G. Lancet (1980) [Pubmed]
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