Tacrolimus and Pimecrolimus, Introduction
T IS AN EXCITING TIME in dermatology. Tacrolimus and pimecrolimus
are the first 2 medications of a new class of compounds, topical
immunosuppressive agents that have mechanisms, and pharmacological profiles distinct from topical corticosteroids. Tacrolimus and pimecrolimus appear to be highly useful additions to our armamentarium for the treatment of atopic dermatitis (AD) and other eczematous dermatitis. They may be useful for multiple noneczematous skin conditions as well. A challenge in designing this issue of Seminars in Cutaneous Medicine and Surgery was to collect and present a state of the art assessment of our knowledge of these medications for dermatologic use, while acknowledging that our communal experience with them is still fairly limited. Their impact on the evolution of dermatologic therapeutics should be interesting, as our clinical use of these medications increases and as controlled studies and physician informal “trials” are performed. This issue is a collection of preclinical and clinical information on the tacrolimus and pimecrolimus that should be relevant and helpful to dermatologists and other health care professionals treating cutaneous disease.