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Arch Dermatol Res. 1997 Nov;289(12):671-6.

Induction of cutaneous lymphocyte-associated antigen expression by group A streptococcal antigens in psoriasis.

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Department of Dermatology, St. Mary's Hospital, Paddington, London, UK.


The cutaneous lymphocyte-associated antigen (CLA) has been proposed as a homing receptor for the selective migration of memory T cells into the skin. To investigate the effect of group A streptococci (GAS) on the migration of T cells in psoriasis, CLA expression was assessed by double-staining for CD3 and the HECA-452 epitope on peripheral blood T cells from 13 patients with psoriasis, 10 patients with other inflammatory skin diseases and 12 normal controls before and after 7 days culture with a GAS sonicate, Candida albicans (control antigen) or medium. In addition, CLA+, and CLA-, CD3+ CD45RO+ subsets were isolated from individuals in each group and V beta 2 expression and proliferation to GAS studied. Mean CLA expression by freshly isolated T cells was almost identical in the three groups. After culture with GAS, T cells from the psoriatic patients and control showed a significant increase in mean percentage CLA+ expression compared to medium (P < 0.002, P < 0.05, respectively). This induction was inhibited by the addition of anti-IL-12 antibody. However, in psoriatic patients, but not in controls, the GAS-induced increase was significantly greater than that of C. albicans (P < 0.002) and was accompanied by a decrease in T cells positive for the peripheral lymph node homing receptor, L-selectin (P < 0.05). The percentage of V beta 2+ T cells was markedly higher in the CLA+ than in the CLA- T-cell subset in psoriatic patients (P < 0.01) and controls; both subsets proliferated to GAS, in each group. These findings suggest a differential modulation of specific tissue homing receptors on T cells by GAS in psoriasis.

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