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Equol for sebum reduction

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I hope someone suitably knowledgeable might be able to enlighten me on the issue of equol (soy derivative) and sebum production.

It has been reported recently that equol has been shown to be effective at blocking DHT from binding with the androgen receptors. I have heard this reported in the context of hair loss and prostatic hyperplasia, but not sebum production. Since everyone says that the sebaceous glands are largely controlled by DHT, I would think in theory equol should reduce sebum production. The reports do not suggest a sebosuppressive effect, though, and I don't understand why not.

As I understand it, 5-alpha-reductase inhibitors have two subtypes, I & II. I is more significant for sebum production, and II is more significant for hair loss. Unlike existing systemic DHT blockers such as Finasteride (type II) and Dutasteride (I & II), equol doesn't reduce the amount of DHT in circulation, it just stops it from actually doing anything. This has the advantage that it does not increase testosterone, which may happen with Finasteride and Dutasteride because they prevent conversion of testosterone into DHT.

My question, therefore - with some related sub-questions - is:

1. Has equol been shown to, or is it expected to, reduce sebum production? If not, why not?


a. Has there been any vaguely subjective study on Dutasteride for this purpose?

b. Does this androgen receptor blocking by equol affect both types I & II isoenzymes?

c. Has type I actually been demonstrated to affect sebaceous glands, or is this just an assumption based on a study which indicated that type II did not?

Thanks in advance.

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Actually I have just found something to partially answer my own question above regarding whether type I 5AR inhibition has been shown to be effective -

A post at from Bryan states that

"some big-name dermatologists did a study which examined the effect of Merck's experimental 5a-reductase type 1 inhibiting drug on acne. They found that the drug had NO effect at all on the cause of acne"

Therefore I am none the wiser since this indicates that netiher type I nor type II 5AR inhibitors have proved to reduce sebum production. And yet I thought it was accepted that sebum production is triggered by DHT. ??

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And yet I thought it was suspected that sebum production is triggered by DHT. ??

fixed that for you...

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