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J Invest Dermatol. 2011 Jun;131(6):1272-9. doi: 10.1038/jid.2011.24. Epub 2011 Feb 24.

TNF-α downregulates filaggrin and loricrin through c-Jun N-terminal kinase: role for TNF-α antagonists to improve skin barrier.

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  • 1Department of Pediatrics, National Jewish Health, Denver, Colorado 80206, USA.

Erratum in

  • J Invest Dermatol. 2011 Jun;131(6):1388. Guttman, Emma [corrected to Guttman-Yassky, Emma].


Filaggrin (FLG), loricrin (LOR), and involucrin are important epidermal barrier proteins. As psoriasis is characterized by overexpression of tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) and impaired skin barrier, we investigated the expression of skin barrier proteins in psoriasis patients and whether their expression was modulated by TNF-α. The expression of FLG and LOR was found to be decreased in lesional and non-lesional skin of psoriasis patients. A correlation was found between the expression of TNF-α and epidermal barrier proteins in psoriasis. TNF-α was found to modulate the expression of FLG and LOR via a c-Jun N-terminal kinase-dependent pathway. Importantly, we report that clinical treatment of psoriasis patients with a TNF-α antagonist results in significant enhancement of epidermal barrier protein expression. Our current study suggests that TNF inhibits barrier protein expression, and TNF-α antagonists may contribute to clinical improvement in patients with psoriasis by improving barrier protein expression.

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