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Don't Scratch That Itch: Blocking The Protein IL-21R Helps Prevent A Form Of Eczema

Date:
December 31, 2008
Source:
Journal of Clinical Investigation
Summary:
Researchers have identified a role for the protein IL-21R in a mouse model of atopic dermatitis, a common allergic inflammatory skin disease often known as eczema.

Raif Geha and colleagues, at Children's Hospital, Boston, have identified a role for the protein IL-21R in a mouse model of atopic dermatitis, a common allergic inflammatory skin disease often known as eczema.

Results of their study appear online Dec. 15 in the Journal of Clinical Investigation.

As analysis of affected skin from patients with atopic dermatitis showed increased expression of IL-21R and the soluble factor that binds to it (IL-21), the authors suggest that targeting the IL-21/IL-21R interaction in the skin might help prevent skin sensitization, and therefore atopic dermatitis.

In the study, expression of IL-21R and IL-21 was increased in affected skin from patients with atopic dermatitis and in mouse skin subjected to irritation. The importance of this was highlighted by the observation that mice lacking IL-21R and normal mice treated with a molecule that blocks the IL-21/IL-21R interaction did not develop inflammation resembling atopic dermatitis after skin irritation and exposure to an allergen.

Further analysis determined one mechanism underlying the central role of IL-21R in the mouse model of atopic dermatitis. Briefly, immune cells known as DCs in the skin did not migrate to local lymph nodes and activate other immune cells important for causing the allergic inflammatory response in the skin.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Journal of Clinical Investigation. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Jin et al. IL-21R is essential for epicutaneous sensitization and allergic skin inflammation in humans and mice. Journal of Clinical Investigation, 2008; DOI: 10.1172/JCI32310

Cite This Page:

Journal of Clinical Investigation. "Don't Scratch That Itch: Blocking The Protein IL-21R Helps Prevent A Form Of Eczema." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 31 December 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081217200746.htm>.
Journal of Clinical Investigation. (2008, December 31). Don't Scratch That Itch: Blocking The Protein IL-21R Helps Prevent A Form Of Eczema. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 16, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081217200746.htm
Journal of Clinical Investigation. "Don't Scratch That Itch: Blocking The Protein IL-21R Helps Prevent A Form Of Eczema." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081217200746.htm (accessed September 16, 2014).

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