Phenylalanine in the treatment of vitiligo

G. Orecchia, L. Perfetti, F. Borghini, P. Malagoli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This study evaluates the efficacy of phenylalanine in association with sunlight, in the treatment of vitiligo. Seventy patients suffering from vitiligo entered the study. At the end of 4 months 21 subjects were able to be examined. Twelve patients were treated with phenylalanine in a dose of 50 mg/kg body weight given orally, 1 hour before sunlight exposure. Six other patients with vitiligo participated in the study as control: they were treated with sun irradiation 1 hour after taking a placebo. Three more patients took phenylalanine orally without sun exposure. Ten out of 12 patients treated with oral phenylalanine and sun exposure showed an improvement; 4 out of 6 patients treated with placebo plus sun exposure showed an improvement. No improvement was observed in patients taking only oral phenylalanine. Our investigation demonstrates that sun is the most influencing factor in the pigmentation. However the improved results obtained with the combination phenylalanine plus sun exposure indicate a possible action of this aminoacid on melanocyte, even though the mechanism is still unclear.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)143-146
Number of pages4
JournalAnnali Italiani di Dermatologia Clinica e Sperimentale
Volume46
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1992

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology

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