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Przegl Lek. 2005;62(5):310-3.

[Pathogenesis of skin scleroderma--literature review].

[Article in Polish]

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Katedra i Klinika Dermatologii, Collegium Medicum, Uniwersytetu JagielloĊ„skiego w Krakowie.


The pathogenesis of skin scleroderma (LS) is still unknown. Disturbances of vessels system, connective tissue metabolism and humoral and cellular immunological response is observed. Antinuclear antibodies are detected in 30-80% of patients with different types of skin scleroderma. They are present more often in patients with disseminated lesions and linear type of LS compared to morphoea au plaque. In our own analysis 28.5% of patients had also antibodies directed against Borrelia burgdorferi. It is believed that the injury of endothelial cells and proliferation in medial part of small vessels - which both lead to chronic ischemia - are the earliest disturbances observed in histopathological examination of the skin taken from systemic as well as from skin scleroderma patients. During last few years, there were some interesting reports concerning functional changes of endothelial cells which led to disturbances in tension of vessels smooth muscles. Free radicals - in genetically predispose people--can also provoke scleroderma lesions through their injury action on endothelial cells and stimulation of fibroblasts. In morphoea, the process of fibrosis begins around vessels. Deposition of connective tissue matrix is observed, especially collagen type I and III. This stimulation of fibroblasts as well as accumulation of connective tissue matrix are secondary to some stimulatory factors. These are: PDF, bFGF, TGFbeta and some cytokines. In morphoea patients serum levels of IL-1, IL-2, IL-4, IL-6 and IL-8 were elevated. In literature, levels and production of collagenases were decreased, although more authors say that tissue inhibitors of metalloproteinases are the main factor in fibrosis. The analysis of data tends to suspicion that enormous fibrosis observed in different types of scleroderma can be the result of increased production of collagen and other components of connective tissue as well as their incomplete degradation. Presented clinical and laboratory data show how many different factors influence etiopathogenesis of morphoea.

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