6 - [ 3 - (1 -adamantyl )-4- methoxyphenyl ] - naphthalene- 2-carboxylic acid

D10AD03, D10AD53

Polyaromatic retinoid

314 ° C

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Adapalene is a synthetic naphthoic acid derivative, and assigned to the third generation retinoids ( polyaromatic retinoids ).

Area of ​​application

Adapalene is a topical application in the treatment of acne. As a drug, it is approved in Europe, Australia and North America; Gel and cream formulations are offered. For improved effectiveness in acne vulgaris, a gel formulation has been developed in combination with benzoyl peroxide.


Adapalene acts comedolytic and anti-inflammatory. Clinical studies showed a more rapid onset of action compared to tretinoin with better tolerability. This is explained by a particularly high affinity for the retinoid receptors in the excretory duct of the sebaceous follicle.

Side effects

Skin redness, feeling of warmth, dryness and itching may occur.


A combination with the usual antibiotics in the treatment of acne, particularly erythromycin and clindamycin, showed no interaction so far. Adapalene is photostable.

Pregnancy and lactation

Systemic absorption of significant amounts of active ingredient through the skin is not expected. From the use during pregnancy and breastfeeding is still recommended, as safety has not been sufficiently studied.

Trade names

Differin (D, A, CH)

Epiduo (D, A, CH)