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Rev Endocr Metab Disord. 2016 Sep;17(3):449-457.

Endocrine-disrupting chemicals and skin manifestations.

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Department of Dermatology, Ren Ji Hospital, School of Medicine, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai, People's Republic of China.
Departments of Dermatology, Venereology, Allergology and Immunology, Dessau Medical Center, Auenweg 38, 06847, Dessau, Germany.


Endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) are exogenous compounds that have the ability to disrupt the production and actions of hormones through direct or indirect interaction with hormone receptors, thus acting as agonists or antagonists. Human health is affected after either individual occupation or dietary and environmental exposure to EDCs. On the other hand, skin is one of the largest organs of the body and its main function is protection from noxious substances. EDCs perturb the endocrine system, and they are also carcinogenic, immunotoxic, and hepatotoxic to human skin. In addition, their effects on keratinocytes, melanocytes, sebocytes, inflammatory and immunological cells, and skin stem cells produce inflammatory and allergic skin diseases, chloracne, disorders of skin pigmentation, skin cancer, and skin aging. Mechanisms, which EDCs use to induce these skin disorders are complicated, and involve the interference of endogenous hormones and most importantly the activation of the aryl hydrocarbon receptor signal pathway. Further studies on EDCs and skin diseases are necessary to elucidate these mechanisms.


Aryl hydrocarbon receptor; Endocrine-disrupting chemicals; Manifestation; Mechanism; Skin

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