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Trends Immunol. 2006 Jan;27(1):32-9. Epub 2005 Nov 2.

Neuroimmunoendocrine circuitry of the 'brain-skin connection'.

Author information

1
Department of Dermatology, University Hospital Schleswig-Holstein, Campus Lübeck, University of Lübeck, D-23538 Lübeck, Germany. ralf.paus@uk-sh.de

Abstract

The skin offers an ideally suited, clinically relevant model for studying the crossroads between peripheral and systemic responses to stress. A 'brain-skin connection' with local neuroimmunoendocrine circuitry underlies the pathogenesis of allergic and inflammatory skin diseases, triggered or aggravated by stress. In stressed mice, corticotropin-releasing hormone, nerve growth factor, neurotensin, substance P and mast cells are recruited hierarchically to induce neurogenic skin inflammation, which inhibits hair growth. The hair follicle is both a target and a source for immunomodulatory stress mediators, and has an equivalent of the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal axis. Thus, the skin and its appendages enable the study of complex neuroimmunoendocrine responses that peripheral tissues launch upon stress exposure, as a basis for identifying new targets for therapeutic stress intervention.

PMID:
16269267
DOI:
10.1016/j.it.2005.10.002
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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