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Expert Review of Dermatology
Expet Rev Dermatol

ISSN: 1746-9872.

The economic burden of skin disease is huge – estimated at $37 billion annually in the USA alone, according to a 2005 study by the American Academy of Dermatology Association and the Society for Investigative Dermatology. However, as new medical advances impact unique unmet needs in skin disease management, the dermatology field is poised for growth. The specialty has seen the entry of new drug classes and improved reformulations of existing therapeutics. Emerging biologic agents are poised to further expand the therapeutic armamentarium in areas such as psoriasis, and therapeutic cancer vaccines may have similar impact in melanoma. Bioengineering and materials science is now offering exciting prospects, for example the potential to produce substrates on which human skin cells can thrive for use in wound treatment. These advances, combined with improved understanding of disease processes through genomics and bioinformatics, offer the prospect of treatment and prevention of these disorders that will be more powerful, yielding fewer side effects than ever before. At the same time, logistical and political challenges face the specialty. It is estimated that NIH research expenditures on skin diseases will total nearly $172 million in 2005 – substantially lower than the amount committed to other diseases with lower health and economic burdens. The specialty needs the resources to embrace excellence in education and research, so that practitioners can make best use of technologies and the advancement of scientific and clinical knowledge. This will require healthcare organizations and stakeholders to develop a shared vision of the shape of future dermatology services. Expert Review of Dermatology provides rapid publication of commentary and analysis on the latest research and clinical advances in all areas of dermatology, and of the challenges for the specialty in a new medical era. In collaboration with an expert Editorial Advisory Panel, our dedicated editorial team identifies the most significant and up-to-date review themes within this diverse speciality.

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