Cure in sight?

Arthri­tis drugs are be­ing used to treat vi­tiligo pa­tients

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Drugs for treat­ing arthri­tis can re-pig­ment skin dam­aged by vi­tiligo

VI­TILIGO IS a com­mon, psy­cho­log­i­cally dev­as­tat­ing con­di­tion that causes skin to lose its pig­ments or color. Now, der­ma­tol­o­gists at Yale School of Medicine say med­i­ca­tion for treat­ing rheuma­toid arthri­tis can be used to re­store skin color in a pa­tient suf­fer­ing from vi­tiligo—a con­di­tion that plagued late pop star Michael Jack­son. They ad­min­is­tered to­fac­i­tinib, used to treat rheuma­toid arthri­tis, to a 53-year-old pa­tient with prom­i­nent white spots cov­er­ing her face, hands, and body. Within two months of treat­ment, the pa­tient ex­pe­ri­enced par­tial repig­men­ta­tion on her face, arms, and hands. Af­ter five months, the white spots on her face and hands were nearly gone, with only a few spots re­main­ing on other parts of her body. No­tably, to­fac­i­tinib caused no ad­verse side ef­fects dur­ing the course of treat­ment. JAMA Der­ma­tol­ogy, June 24

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