Androgens, Androgen Receptors, and the Skin: From the Laboratory to the Clinic With Emphasis on Clinical and Therapeutic Implications
Del Rosso JQ, Kircik LH, Gold LS, and Thiboutot D. Androgens, Androgen Receptors, and the Skin: From the Laboratory to the Clinic With Emphasis on Clinical and Therapeutic Implications. Journal of Drugs in Dermatology 2020; 19(3):S30-S35.
J Drugs Dermatol
The effects of androgens on human skin include growth and differentiation of sebaceous glands, terminal hair growth, epidermal barrier function, wound healing, and modification of the cutaneous microbiome. Androgens exert their activities via ligand formation with intracytoplasmic androgen receptors which can then translocate to the nucleus and interact with genetic androgen response elements to influence signaling cascades. Differences in tissue distribution and activities of enzymes that modify androgen synthesis and catabolism, variations related to gender and ethnicity/race, and genetic polymorphisms that affect androgen receptor functionality directly impact androgen physiology and the pathophysiology associated with a variety of disease states. This manuscript reviews the fundamentals of androgen physiology, androgen synthesis and catabolism in local skin tissue, androgen receptor activity, as well as the impact of genetic polymorphisms and gender. Emphasis is placed on the roles of androgenic activity in sebaceous gland development, sebum production, and the pathophysiology of acne vulgaris.