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The putative role of apoptosis in the induction of pemphigus

Authors
Journal
Medical Hypotheses
0306-9877
Publisher
Elsevier
Publication Date
Volume
64
Issue
1
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/j.mehy.2004.06.027
Disciplines
  • Medicine

Abstract

Summary The apoptotic cell has recently been shown to play a central role in tolerizing B cells and T cells to both tissue-specific and ubiquitously expressed self-antigens, and to possibly drive the autoimmune response in systemic lupus erythematosus, an autoimmune disease which bears many similarities to pemphigus. We now propose a similar mechanism in the induction of pemphigus, namely, that a dysregulation in apoptosis expressed as an impairment of normal programmed cell death of epidermal keratinocytes and/or deficient and inadequate clearance of apoptotic material (specifically, desmoglein) may render it antigenic with the consequent production of autoantibodies. The fact that some thiol-containing compounds which are well-known inducers of acantholysis in vitro and pemphigus in vivo were shown to inhibit apoptosis might support our hypothesis.

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