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Relationship of ceramide–, and free fatty acid–cholesterol ratios in the stratum corneum with skin barrier function of normal, atopic dermatitis lesional and non-lesional skins

      One of the main causes for atopic dermatitis (AD) is skin barrier dysfunction which can be represented as increased trans-epidermal water loss (TEWL). Skin barrier dysfunction is induced by the disruption of stratum corneum (SC), a dense protein–lipid matrix which functions as a barrier to exogenous irritants and allergens. Recently a relationship between altered SC lipid profiles and impaired skin barrier function has been described [
      • Janssens M.
      • van Smeden J.
      • Gooris G.S.
      • Bras W.
      • Portale G.
      • Caspers P.J.
      • et al.
      Increase in short-chain ceramides correlates with an altered lipid organization and decreased barrier function in atopic eczema patients.
      ,
      • Park Y.H.
      • Jang W.H.
      • Seo J.A.
      • Park M.
      • Lee T.R.
      • Park Y.H.
      • et al.
      Decrease of ceramides with very long-chain fatty acids and downregulation of elongases in a murine atopic dermatitis model.
      ]. SC lipids are composed of ceramides (CER), free fatty acids (FFA) and cholesterol (CHOL)[
      • Jungersted J.M.
      • Hellgren L.I.
      • Jemec G.B.
      • Agner T.
      Lipids and skin barrier function – a clinical perspective.
      ]. Ishikawa et al. [
      • Ishikawa J.
      • Narita H.
      • Kondo N.
      • Hotta M.
      • Takagi Y.
      • Masukawa Y.
      • et al.
      Changes in the ceramide profile of atopic dermatitis patients.
      ] reported that 9 out of 11 CER classes found in human SC, exhibit statistically significant correlations with TEWL in the aspect of contents and average total carbon numbers. van Smeden et al. [
      • van Smeden J.
      • Janssens M.
      • Kaye E.C.
      • Caspers P.J.
      • Lavrijsen A.P.
      • Vreeken R.J.
      • et al.
      The importance of free fatty acid chain length for the skin barrier function in atopic eczema patients.
      ] further demonstrated the reduction of carbon-chain length in FFAs and CERs in AD lesion, enlightening the roles of respective FFA and CER species in skin barrier function.

      Keywords

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