The effect of subcutaneously administered 13-cis-retinoic acid and an aromatic retinoid (Ro 10-9359) on the sebaceous glands of the hamster flank organ were compared. As previously reported, 13-cis-retinoic acid caused a marked diminution of sebaceous gland size without affecting other androgen dependent structures. The aromatic retinoid derivative showed no effect upon any of the flank organ components. Studies utilizing androgen stimulated female confirmed our previous finding that 13-cis-retinoic acid prevented the growth of sebaceous glands without affecting the development of dermal pigmentation or large pigmented hair follicles. The aromatic retinoid derivative showed slight, if any, effect upon sebaceous gland size and no effect upon pigmentation or pigmented follicle development. The findings with this model system suggest that any efficacy of Ro 10-9359 in the treatment of acne would be by some mode other than the inhibition of sebum production.
J Invest Dermatol, 76: 1, 1981 Jan, 68-9