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Photochem Photobiol Sci. 2008 Jan;7(1):120-5. doi: 10.1039/b709856a. Epub 2007 Nov 2.

Estrogen receptor-beta signaling protects epidermal cytokine expression and immune function from UVB-induced impairment in mice.

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Faculty of Veterinary Science, University of Sydney, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.


A previous study in the hairless mouse, in which the photoimmune protective properties of a topical phytoestrogen or 17-beta-estradiol were abrogated by the estrogen receptor antagonist ICI 182,780, revealed that estrogen receptor (Er) signaling is involved in the regulation of the suppression of immune function by UVB (290-320 nm) radiation. Here we identify the expression of Er-beta but not Er-alpha mRNA in hairless mouse skin, whereas Er-alpha and Er-beta mRNA were present in normal haired mouse skin. This suggests that the non-classical estrogen target Er-beta is involved in the photoimmune modulation, and is consistent with Er-alpha being more closely associated with hair growth control, as indicated by other studies. In mice with a null mutation for Er-beta, there was a significant exacerbation of the solar simulated UV (290-400 nm)-induced suppression of contact hypersensitivity. Immunohistochemical analysis revealed that the Er-beta deficiency inhibited the normally immunoprotective upregulation by the UVA (320-400 nm) waveband of the epidermal expression of the cytokines IFN-gamma and IL-12. Er-beta deficiency also significantly increased the UVB-induced expression of the immunosuppressive cytokine IL-10. Thus Er signalling via the Er-beta is evidently a major regulator of the UVA and UVB waveband interactions that determine the skin's immune functional status, and achieves this by normalization of the cutaneous cytokine array in the UV-irradiated skin.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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