21 Mar Rosacea Should Be Considered More Than Cosmetic Disorder
MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Alexander Egeberg, MD PhD
National Allergy Research Centre, Departments of Dermato-Allergology and Cardiology
Herlev and Gentofte University Hospital
University of Copenhagen
MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?
Dr. Egeberg: Rosacea skin shows an up-regulation of various cytokines (small proteins that are important in cell signalling), and displays increased activation and expression of matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs). Both rosacea and Parkinson’s disease have been associated with small intestinal bacterial overgrowth and Helicobacter pylori infection, and MMPs. MMPs are enzymes that are involved in tissue remodeling, organ development, and regulation of inflammatory processes.
Parkinson’s is a progressive neurological disease that results from the gradual loss of brain cells that produce dopamine, a chemical that sends messages to the part of the brain that controls movement and coordination. Importantly, MMPs have also been implicated in the pathogenesis of Parkinson’s disease and other neurodegenerative disorders, and MMPs contribute to loss of dopamine producing brain cells.
Rosacea is often characterized by flare-ups and remissions and typically presents as a redness on the cheeks, nose, chin or forehead. In our study, we found a significantly (approximately two-fold) increased risk of developing Parkinson’s disease, a chronic and progressive movement disorder, among patients with rosacea. Also, we found that treatment with tetracycline, an oral antibiotic, was associated with a slightly decreased risk of Parkinson’s disease.
MedicalResearch.com: What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?
Dr. Egeberg: Research suggest that a large majority of patients with rosacea does not seek medical treatment, however medical assessment may be warranted in such patients. Importantly, rosacea should be considered more than just a cosmetic disorder, as it may have a number of systemic implications, including risk of neurologic diseases.
MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?
Dr. Egeberg: We observed a slightly lower risk of Parkinson’s disease in patients treated with tetracycline. Tetracyclines have been used in the treatment of rosacea for decades presumably due to their ability inhibit MMP expression, although their precise primary target is not clear. A potential neuroprotective effect of tetracycline has previously been suggested both in animal models and a phase 2 randomized double-blinded clinical trial of a tetracycline (minocycline) in patients with early Parkinson’s disease. Indeed, the observed reduced occurrence of Parkinson’s disease in patients treated with tetracyclines is intriguing, and supports a call for more definitive randomized trials of this drug class in patients with Parkinson’s disease.
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Alexander Egeberg, MD PhD (2016). Rosacea Should Be Considered More Than Cosmetic Disorder