Expression of integrins in functional and dystrophic epidermolysis bullosa

Vincenzo Nazzaro, Emilio Berti, Amilcare Cerri, Alberto Brusasco, Riccardo Cavalli, Ruggero Caputo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Recently, monoclonal antibodies (MoAb) have been raised against a family of adhesive membrane receptors (R) for extracellular matrix molecules known as integrins. In order to ascertain whether these adhesive proteins are normally expressed in inherited epidermolysis bullosa (EB) dermal epidermaljunction, we studied the reactivity of MoAb recognizing receptors for VLA-1 (R for unknown ligand), VLA-2 (R for collagen), VLA-3 (R for collagen, laminin, fibronectin), VLA-4 (R for unknown ligand), VLA-5 (R for fibronectin), VLA-6 (R for laminin), VNRα, and VNRβ (R for vitronectin) on cryostat skin sections from EB patients and normal controls and on cytospins of normal epidermal cell suspensions with indirect immunohistochemical methods. Two cases of junctional EB (EBj) (lethal and non-lethal), three cases of dominant dystrophic EB (EBdd), two cases of recessive dystrophic EB (EBdr), and two normal controls skin sections and cell suspensions entered the study. No significant modification of the distribution of these adhesive receptors was observed injunctional and dystrophic EB skin. Both in normal and EB specimens MoAb against VLA-2, VLA-3, and VNRα determinants showed reactivity with the total cytoplasmic membrane of basal keratinocytes and basement membrane zone. Interestingly, anti-VLA-6 MoAb was characterized by an intense linear staining of the dermal-epidermal junction with the same localization on the roof of the blisters in EBj, EBdd, and EBdr as bullous pemphigoid (BP) serum. On the basis of these results we suggest that anti-VLA-6 MoAb could be used instead of BP serum for immunohistochemical detection of the cleavage of blisters in EB.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)60-64
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Investigative Dermatology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1990

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology

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