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Hautarzt. 1997 Apr;48(4):228-33.

[Brazilian pemphigus foliaceus (fogo selvagem)].

[Article in German]

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Dermatologische Klinik und Poliklinik, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universit√§t M√ľnchen.


Most of the clinical, histological and immunohistological features of fogo selvagem resemble those of idiopathic pemphigus foliaceus (PF). Both diseases are clinically characterized by small flaccid bullae evolving into to scaly and crusted lesions, sometimes with pustules, mainly in seborrheic areas of the skin. Mucosal surfaces are mostly spared. The main histologic feature of endemic pemphigus foliaceus is a subcorneal acantholytic blister. Standard immunofluorescence studies demonstrate intercellular IgG deposits throughout the entire epidermis. These IgG antibodies are mainly of the IgG4-subclass. Almost all patients have circulating IgG-autoantibodies in their serum directed against stratified epithelial desmosomes. The fogo selvagem autoantibodies and the PF antibodies are directed against the 160 kD desmosomal glycoprotein desmoglein 1 which together with plakoglobin (85 kD) forms a complex of adhesion proteins with desmosomes of stratified epithelia. Fogo selvagem occurs in endemic foci in some areas of Brazil and possibly in neighbouring South American countries, very often in children, adolescents and young adults. The etiology of fogo selvagem is still unknown. The frequent association with insect bites has lead to the concept of fogo selvagem being a transmissible disease with acquired immunity in adulthood. However, the infectious agent and possible vectors have not yet been identified.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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