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BioMed Research International
Volume 2015 (2015), Article ID 650316, 6 pages
Research Article

Comparative Effects of Retinoic Acid or Glycolic Acid Vehiculated in Different Topical Formulations

1Faculdade de Ciências Farmacêuticas de Ribeirão Preto, Universidade de São Paulo, Avenida do Café, s/n, 14040-903 Ribeirão Preto, SP, Brazil
2Faculdade de Ciências Farmacêuticas, Pontifícia Universidade Católica de Campinas, 13060-904 Campinas, SP, Brazil
3Faculdade de Odontologia de Ribeirão Preto, Universidade de São Paulo, 14040-904 Ribeirão Preto, SP, Brazil

Received 16 July 2014; Revised 15 October 2014; Accepted 31 October 2014

Academic Editor: Peter Fu

Copyright © 2015 Patrícia Maria Berardo Gonçalves Maia Campos et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Retinoids and hydroxy acids have been widely used due to their effects in the regulation of growth and in the differentiation of epithelial cells. However, besides their similar indication, they have different mechanisms of action and thus they may have different effects on the skin; in addition, since the topical formulation efficiency depends on vehicle characteristics, the ingredients of the formulation could alter their effects. Thus the objective of this study was to compare the effects of retinoic acid (RA) and glycolic acid (GA) treatment on the hairless mouse epidermis thickness and horny layer renewal when added in gel, gel cream, or cream formulations. For this, gel, gel cream, and cream formulations (with or without 6% GA or 0.05% RA) were applied in the dorsum of hairless mice, once a day for seven days. After that, the skin was analyzed by histopathologic, morphometric, and stereologic techniques. It was observed that the effects of RA occurred independently from the vehicle, while GA had better results when added in the gel cream and cream. Retinoic acid was more effective when compared to glycolic acid, mainly in the cell renewal and the exfoliation process because it decreased the horny layer thickness.