Maresin 1 as a novel therapy for vitiligo

Patients with vitiligo experience social stigmatization due to white patches on their face and hands. The existing therapies have limited effectiveness. Our lab recently discovered that an omega-3 essential fatty-acid derivative, maresin 1, has the ability to prevent development of vitiligo patches. In this proposal, I plan to test its effectiveness and long-term safety using a mouse model of vitiligo. We will induce vitiligo in B6 mice, and then treat them with maresin 1 injections three times a week for 80 weeks, which is equivalent to 60 years of human life, and observe the mice for changes in white patches and development of side effects. We expect maresin 1 treatment to shrink the white patches without causing cancers or other side effects. The experiments will be performed by an experienced research associate, Dr. Mingwan Su, and a graduate student. My lab is located in Vancouver Coastal Health Research Institute, which has a licensed animal care facility. The results will be vital for planning of maresin 1 clinical trials in the future. Despite using mice for our research, we will collaborate with vitiligo patient partners who will help ensure our findings will eventually be useful to vitiligo patients.