Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 17989887
Acta Derm. Venereol. 2007;87(6):499-505
The role of a genetically impaired epidermal barrier as a major predisposing factor in the pathogenesis of atopic disorders is currently under closer investigation. Variants on three candidate genes (SPINK5, KLK7 and FLG) have been associated with atopic dermatitis. A functional relevance has already been established for filaggrin variants, but not for SPINK5 and KLK7 polymorphisms. The objectives of this study were to confirm the association between SPINK5, KLK7, FLG variants and atopic dermatitis and to assess how variants influence selected phenotypic traits. This cross-sectional study was carried out over 20 months in 99 children and adults with atopic dermatitis (median age 7 years). The following items were analysed: SCORAD, TEWL, ichthyosis vulgaris, presence of asthma, total IgE serum levels. The SPINK5 E420K SNP, the KLK7 4bp insertion polymorphism and the filaggrin mutants (R510X and 2282del4) were analysed as described previously. The control group for genetic analysis was recruited in an ethnically matched, phenotypically anonymous cohort (n=102). The allelic frequencies were 0.525 for SPINK5, 0.26 for KLK7 polymorphisms, 0.101 and 0.075 for 2282del4 and R501X FLG mutants, respectively. The association of atopic dermatitis with filaggrin variants was confirmed, but not that of SPINK5 or KLK7 polymorphisms. SCORAD and TEWL measurements were not influenced by any of the variants. The SPINK5 polymorphism was associated with high IgE serum levels (p=0.011). Abnormal barrier genes do not influence the severity of atopic dermatitis. The SPINK5 gene polymorphism may modulate systemic immune effects favouring the IgE response to atopens. TEWL does not allow the characterization of subsets of patients with or without abnormal barrier genes.