The good news is that researchers from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and the University of Pittsburgh have discovered that a harmless skin virus, called phage, may be used to treat acne. This virus occurs naturally on our skin, and its purpose is to target and kill the bacteria that cause acne. Unlike antibiotics, however, phages target only the bad bacteria. Scientists found that there are 11 versions of the phage virus, and they all share similar DNA coding and carry a gene that creates the protein endolysin. This protein is thought to destroy bacteria by breaking down their cell walls.
"Antibiotics such as tetracycline are so widely used that many acne strains have developed resistance, and drugs like Accutane, while effective, can produce risky side effects, limiting their use," said Dr. Jenny Kim, director of the UCLA Clinic for Acne, Rosacea and Aesthetics.
Acne can cause both physical and emotional scars, so this discovery may literally change people lives. It could be many years before this treatment can be fully developed and available as a cure. In the meantime, if you or someone you know is battling acne, schedule a consultation with us today. We can identify what may be causing skin irritation and recommend the treatment plan that is best for you and your skin. Call us at (864) 242-5872 to schedule your appointment.