A split-face evaluation of a novel pigment-lightening agent compared with no treatment and hydroquinone

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Abstract

Background:

Lignin peroxidase is a cosmetic skin-lightening alternative that breaks down plant cell walls and melanin.

Objective:

This research examined the topical efficacy of lignin peroxidase in pigment lightening.

Methods:

Sixty women aged 18 to 65 years with mild to moderate facial dyspigmentation were enrolled for 12 weeks in 2 cohorts. Cohort 1 applied lignin peroxidase to 1 randomized side of the face and nothing to the opposite side. Cohort 2 applied lignin peroxidase to 1 facial side and generic hydroquinone to the other. Investigator, subject, and dermospectrophotometer measurements were obtained.

Results:

In cohort 1, improved skin texture (P < .001), roughness (P < .001), and overall appearance (P = .002) was noted at week 2 with lignin peroxidase versus no treatment. By week 12, there was a decrease in spot size with lignin peroxidase versus no treatment (P = .014). This was confirmed by a statistically significant reduction in melanin scores with the dermospectrophotometer on lignin peroxidase–treated side at weeks 4, 8, and 12 (P = .003) and a similar reduction in Melasma Area Severity Index score. Cohort 2 demonstrated parity between lignin peroxidase and hydroquinone, but lignin peroxidase was statistically superior in skin texture and roughness.

Limitations:

The sample size was limited.

Conclusions:

Lignin peroxidase might be an over-the-counter skin-lightening preparation with efficacy parity to hydroquinone.

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