Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Skin cell defect is surprising allergy trigger: Skin and food allergies can be result of skin cell 'glue' deficiency

Date:
August 26, 2013
Source:
Northwestern University
Summary:
A structural defect in skin cells can contribute to allergy development, including skin and food allergies, traditionally thought primarily to be a dysfunction of the immune system.

Rash on skin. A structural defect in skin cells can contribute to allergy development.
Credit: © Stιphane Bidouze / Fotolia

In a new study published in Nature Genetics, Northwestern Medicine and Tel Aviv University scientists have found that a structural defect in skin cells can contribute to allergy development, including skin and food allergies, traditionally thought primarily to be a dysfunction of the immune system.

The finding is related to the team's identification of a new rare genetic disease, called "severe dermatitis, multiple allergies, and metabolic wasting," or SAM, caused by mutations in the molecule desmoglein 1.

"Desmoglein 1 is best understood as the 'glue' that holds the outer layer of human skin together," said Kathleen Green, Joseph L. Mayberry, Sr., Professor of Pathology and Toxicology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. "Historically, the molecule was mainly believed to have a structural role: this adhesion between cells contributes to the physical barrier that regulates water loss and also acts as the body's major defense against environmental elements. But there are a large number of molecules that form this barrier, distributed in a highly-patterned manner, prompting our team to hypothesize that they do more than just mediate adhesion."

Green's group at Northwestern worked with an international team that analyzed clinical data from two families, combined with genetic analysis including next-generation DNA sequencing and light and electron microscopy, among other techniques. They found that when desmoglein 1 does not properly function or does not exist, the resulting barrier disruption can affect the immune response, and consequences can be severe.

"This work is also significant because it suggests that in addition to impairing the physical barrier, loss of desmoglein 1 may more directly regulate expression of genes that control the immune response and contribute to allergy," says Green. "Conceptually, it allows us to build on previous studies and make conclusions about the importance of other structural proteins in the skin barrier."

Green notes that the finding, combined with recent published data, could eventually lead investigators to discover further connections between defects in structural molecules and less severe allergies such as atopic dermatitis, eczema and more common food allergies.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Northwestern University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Liat Samuelov, Ofer Sarig, Robert M Harmon, Debora Rapaport, Akemi Ishida-Yamamoto, Ofer Isakov, Jennifer L Koetsier, Andrea Gat, Ilan Goldberg, Reuven Bergman, Ronen Spiegel, Ori Eytan, Shamir Geller, Sarit Peleg, Noam Shomron, Christabelle S M Goh, Neil J Wilson, Frances J D Smith, Elizabeth Pohler, Michael A Simpson, W H Irwin McLean, Alan D Irvine, Mia Horowitz, John A McGrath, Kathleen J Green, Eli Sprecher. Desmoglein 1 deficiency results in severe dermatitis, multiple allergies and metabolic wasting. Nature Genetics, 2013; DOI: 10.1038/ng.2739

Cite This Page:

Northwestern University. "Skin cell defect is surprising allergy trigger: Skin and food allergies can be result of skin cell 'glue' deficiency." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 26 August 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/08/130826123140.htm>.
Northwestern University. (2013, August 26). Skin cell defect is surprising allergy trigger: Skin and food allergies can be result of skin cell 'glue' deficiency. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/08/130826123140.htm
Northwestern University. "Skin cell defect is surprising allergy trigger: Skin and food allergies can be result of skin cell 'glue' deficiency." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/08/130826123140.htm (accessed September 23, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Ebola Costs Keep Mounting

Ebola Costs Keep Mounting

Reuters - Business Video Online (Sep. 23, 2014) — The WHO has warned up to 20,000 people could be infected with Ebola over the next few weeks. As Sonia Legg reports, the implications for the West African countries suffering from the disease are huge. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Cases Could Reach 1.4 Million Within 4 Months

Ebola Cases Could Reach 1.4 Million Within 4 Months

Newsy (Sep. 23, 2014) — Health officials warn that without further intervention, the number of Ebola cases in Liberia and Sierra Leone could reach 1.4 million by January. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
WHO: Ebola Cases to Triple in Weeks Without Drastic Action

WHO: Ebola Cases to Triple in Weeks Without Drastic Action

AFP (Sep. 23, 2014) — The number of Ebola infections will triple to 20,000 by November, soaring by thousands every week if efforts to stop the outbreak are not stepped up radically, the WHO warned in a study on Tuesday. Duration: 01:01 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
5 Ways Men Can Prevent Most Heart Attacks

5 Ways Men Can Prevent Most Heart Attacks

Newsy (Sep. 23, 2014) — No surprise here: A recent study says men can reduce their risk of heart attack by maintaining a healthy lifestyle, which includes daily exercise. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins