Research Article| Volume 30, ISSUE 3, P215-223, December 2002

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Fibroblasts and ascorbate regulate epidermalization in reconstructed human epidermis


      Skin equivalent model provides a new investigating system to study the role of extracellular matrix and dermal factors such as collagen, basement membrane components and fibroblasts (Fb) which contribute to cell-cell and cell-matrix interactions. Although basement membrane factors is known to play an important role in epidermal differentiation and epidermal-matrix adhesion, comparative effects of these extracellular matrix and dermal factors on the reconstruction of epidermis are little known. In this study, we investigated effects of type I collagen (Coll I), type IV collagen plus laminin (LAM) coated Coll I (Coll IV+LAM), and human Fb enriched Coll I (Coll I+Fb) on epidermal reconstruction. When human keratinocytes were cultured on three different gels containing Coll I, Coll IV+LAM and Coll I+Fb, basal keratinocytes were cuboidal and perpendicular to the dermo-epidermal junction only in the gel containing Coll I+Fb. Proliferation marker expression was prominent and differentiation marker expression was similar with those of normal skin in the gel containing Coll I+Fb than in the other gel models. Since ascorbate is suspected to exert an effect as a modulator of proliferation and differentiation in keratinocytes, we tested the effects of ascorbate on human epidermis reconstruction. When 25 μg/ml ascorbate was added, disordered arrangement of epidermis was disappeared and differentiation marker expression was similar with its expression in normal skin. These data indicate that human Fb and a modulator of proliferation and differentiation such as ascorbate are essential for epidermalization in reconstructed epidermis.



      Coll I, type I collagen (), Coll IV, type IV collagen (), LAM, laminin (), Fb, fibroblasts (), DED, de-epidermized dermis (), LSE, living skin equivalent ()
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