Researchers exploring how to improve dermatological treatments, so they are more effective, require less frequent injections and cause fewer significant side effects, have shown that adding STAR particles to topical creams may be the answer.

The problem in dermatology is that most drugs are not absorbed well into skin, so often need to be given orally or intravenously. Exposing the whole body to dermatological drugs often has unwanted side effects such as nausea or organ damage. A novel way to topically apply drugs is needed to overcome this; fortunately, the barrier layer of skin that prevents drugs being absorbed, called the stratum corneum, can be pierced by STAR particles rubbed on the skin, enabling drugs to enter the body.