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Desmoglein as a target in autoimmunity and infection

Authors
Journal
Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology
0190-9622
Publisher
Elsevier
Publication Date
Volume
48
Issue
2
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1067/mjd.2003.7
Disciplines
  • Medicine

Abstract

Abstract Clinical phenotypes of most diseases are complex. However, once the mechanism behind the scene is clarified, the nature shows amazing beauty. There is a simple logic behind a complex disease. The exact molecular mechanism of the blister formation in staphylococcal scalded skin syndrome (SSSS) remained to be elucidated for 3 decades since exfoliative toxin was discovered by Melish and Glasgow in 1970. A knowledge accumulated to understand the pathogenesis of pemphigus and cell-cell adhesion of keratinocytes led us to solve this question. Desmoglein 1, which is a cadherin type cell-cell adhesion molecule in desmosomes, is targeted in two different skin diseases, pemphigus foliaceus, and SSSS. In pemphigus foliaceus IgG autoantibodies are developed against desmoglein 1 and inhibit its adhesive function with resultant blister formation in the superficial epidermis. In SSSS, exfoliative toxin produced by Staphylococcus aureus specifically binds and cleaves desmoglein 1 with resultant blister formation at the identical site. (J Am Acad Dermatol 2003;48:244-52.)

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