Vitiligo Pathogenesis and Emerging Treatments

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Medicine, Division of Dermatology; UMass Metabolic Network



Document Type



Cellular and Molecular Physiology | Dermatology | Skin and Connective Tissue Diseases


The pathogenesis of vitiligo involves interplay between intrinsic and extrinsic melanocyte defects, innate immune inflammation, and T-cell-mediated melanocyte destruction. The goal of treatment is to not only halt disease progression but also promote repigmentation through melanocyte regeneration, proliferation, and migration. Treatment strategies that address all aspects of disease pathogenesis and repigmentation are likely to have greatest efficacy, a strategy that may require combination therapies. Current treatments generally involve nontargeted suppression of autoimmunity, whereas emerging treatments are likely to use a more targeted approach based on in-depth understanding of disease pathogenesis, which may provide higher efficacy with a good safety profile.

Rights and Permissions

Citation: Dermatol Clin. 2017 Apr;35(2):257-265. doi: 10.1016/j.det.2016.11.014. Link to article on publisher's site

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed


Autoimmunity, Cellular stress, Chemokines, Melanogenesis, Targeted therapy, Vitiligo

PubMed ID