Published: 2019-08-28

A rational pharmacotherapeutic study of comparative safety among topical anti-acne 1% nadifloxacin monotherapy, 0.1% adapalene monotherapy, 0.025% tretinoin monotherapy, 1% nadifloxacin and 0.1% adapalene combination therapy and 1% nadifloxacin and 0.025% tretinoin combination therapy, in mild to moderate acne vulgaris, in tertiary care hospitals

Moumita Hazra


Background: Topical adapalene and tretinoin, are comedolytic, anti-comedogenic and anti-inflammatory, on RAR (α, β, γ) receptors binding. Adapalene enables quicker follicular penetration, by lesser anti-AP-1 (c-Jun, c-Fos) and no CRBPII mRNA actions, causing chemical stability, lipophilicity and less photo-lability, producing lesser photosensitivity and no skin irritation, unlike tretinoin; wherein reducible by overnight application and combination therapy, slow-release polymers or emollients, respectively. Topical nadifloxacin is bactericidal, anti-inflammatory and comedolytic, with inhibitory effect on DNA gyrase, DNA topoisomerase IV and IL-1α, IL-6, IL-8. The Global Alliance to Improve Outcomes in Acne Guidelines recommend synergistic and additive combination therapies, which enhance therapeutic efficacy and reduce adverse effects. Due to inadequacy of data, this study was conducted, to compare the safety among topical anti-acne monotherapies and combination therapies, and to easily detect any adverse effect producing component in the topical combination therapy.

Methods: In this multi-centre, prospective, randomised, open-labelled, comparative study, groups A, B, C, D and E (20 patients each), applied topical 1% nadifloxacin monotherapy, 0.1% adapalene monotherapy, 0.025% tretinoin monotherapy, 1% nadifloxacin and 0.1% adapalene combination therapy and 1% nadifloxacin and 0.025% tretinoin combination therapy, respectively, over their facial mild to moderate acne lesions, once daily overnight; and adverse effects, like erythema, scaling, dryness, prutitus, burning, or stinging, were assessed on 0, 15, 30, 60, 90 days and follow-ups, by Local Irritation Scale.

Results: In all 5 groups, no adverse effects were observed, with no statistically significant difference among the observations.

Conclusions: The therapies were well tolerated and safe among all 5 groups.


Nadifloxacin, Adapalene, Tretinoin, Acne, Safety, Local irritation scale

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