JAK Inhibitors Show Promise for Alopecia, Eczema, Vitiligo

Janus kinase (JAK) inhibitors are emerging as a potential treatment option for alopecia areata, eczema, and vitiligo.

These drugs “are going to change how we think about what we do,” said Brett King, MD, PhD, from Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, who has been at the forefront of research in this area.

Two JAK inhibitors — small molecules that interrupt cytokine signaling — were approved about 5 years ago by the US Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis and bone marrow disorders: ruxolitinib (Jakafi, Incyte) and tofacitinib (Xeljanz, Pfizer). However, they have not yet been approved for use in dermatologic conditions.

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