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delayed hypersensitivity, epidermis, histopathology, immunopathology, keratinocyte, lepromatous leprosy, skin leishmaniasis, uberculin test


The epidermal changes that occur in human cutaneous immune responses have been investigated in the tuberculin reaction and in the lesions of tuberculoid and lepromatous leprosy and cutaneous leishmaniasis. In each situation, there was a dermal accumulation of monocytes and T cells, and the epidermis exhibited thickening. In the tuberculin response, the thickness of the epidermis sometimes doubled in 48-72 hr, and this was attributed to increases in both size and number of keratinocytes. In addition, the phenotype of the keratinocytes changed from Ia- to Ia+. Similar changes in keratinocyte Ia-antigen expression occurred in the epidermis overlying untreated tuberculoid leprosy and cutaneous leishmaniasis lesions, but not in lepromatous leprosy. We suggest that one or more epidermal growth factors may be generated in the course of a delayed immune reaction in the dermis.


Open AccessKaplan, G., M. D. Witmer, I. Nath, R. M. Steinman, S. Laal, H. K. Prasad, E. N. Sarno, U. Elvers, and Z. A. Cohn. 1986. "Influence of Delayed Immune Reactions on Human Epidermal Keratinocytes." Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 83 (10): 3469-3473