Effects of systemic isotretinoin on serum markers of collagen synthesis and degradation.
Autio P, Risteli J, Palatsi R, Väänänen K, Vuori J, Risteli L, Oikarinen A.
In the present investigation, collagen synthesis and degradation were studied by measuring the carboxyterminal propeptide of type I procollagen (PICP), the aminoterminal propeptide of type III procollagen (PIIINP) and a type I collagen-specific degradation peptide (ICTP) in the sera of 43 male patients, treated for acne with isotretinoin or with tetracycline. The values were compared with those observed in 24 acne patients without treatment and in healthy controls. The treatment with isotretinoin did not seem to affect these parameters in a cross-sectional setting, whereas tetracycline treatment was associated with slightly decreased levels of ICTP. Since there were marked variations in the PICP, PIIINP and ICTP levels between individual subjects, a follow-up study, including male and female patients, others than in the first part of the study, was conducted. Two other biochemical markers of bone metabolism, osteocalcin, reflecting osteoblastic activity, and tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase (TRAP), reflecting osteoclastic activity, were also analyzed. In females, all these parameters were lower than in males. In addition, the changes in females were more pronounced; in particular, PIIINP and TRAP were significantly increased in females during retinoid treatment (p < 0.05 and p < 0.01, respectively). Importantly, no increase was found in the synthesis of type I collagen during retinoid treatment, suggesting that the commonly used retinoid dosages do not stimulate the synthesis of type I collagen in vivo.