Anti-allergic drug discovery in China for eczema: Current methods and future strategies

Kam Lun Hon, Clara Bik San Lau, Chi Leung Hui, Ping Chung Leung

Research output: Journal article publicationReview articleAcademic researchpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Introduction: Eczema is a common childhood atopic disease associated with chronicity and impaired quality of life. As there is no cure for this disease, treatment relies on topical and systemic anti-allergic or immunomodulating therapies. Topical corticosteroids, macrolide immunosuppressants and oral immunomodulating drugs have been the mainstay for the treatment of recalcitrant disease. However, in China as well as throughout Asia, the use of traditional and proprietary topical and herbal medicines is also popular. Areas covered: This article reviews the evidence for the anti-allergic effects of topical and oral forms of these medicinal. The authors also present and discuss the current methods of preparation and evaluation for these traditional and proprietary medications. Additionally, the authors present the novel delivery method of employing nanotechnology to deliver these herbal therapies. Expert opinion: Many herbal concoctions have had trials which have claimed therapeutic benefits for eczema. However, the scientific methods in these trials are often flawed and often not objective. In fact, the majority of these trials do not provide proof of objective efficacy for the anti-allergic effects claimed. It is felt that the delivery of herbal medication by nanotechnology has several crucial challenges that certainly need to be overcome for the optimal design of therapies for eczema, through optimizing material properties, methods of delivery and understanding the mechanisms of action.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)753-767
Number of pages15
JournalExpert Opinion on Drug Discovery
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2013


  • Allergy
  • Atopic dermatitis
  • Eczema
  • Herbal medicine
  • Traditional Chinese medicine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Drug Discovery


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