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Keywords:

  • proteome analysis;
  • cytokeratin;
  • involucrin;
  • systemic lupus erythematosus

To get a better understanding of the abnormal differentiation or maturation of keratinocytes, we studied the expression and distribution of cytokeratin and involucrin in lesions from systemic lupus erythematosus patients. Two groups of 10 specimens each from systemic lupus erythematosus and normal controls were analyzed by two-dimensional gel electrophoresis, mass spectrometric protein identification, Western blotting and immunohistochemistry. Our results showed that keratin 1 (K1)/K10 together with the new synthesis of K6/K16 were down-regulated and that K5/K14, K2e and involucrin were up-regulated. We found that involucrin was strongly stained in lower epidermal cell layers while K1/10 was weakly stained, particularly when compared with staining in normal epidermis. Additionally, we found that the expression of involucrin was increased. These results imply an aberrant early and terminal differentiation stage in the epidermis of systemic lupus erythematosus, which may be associated with inflammatory cytokines released during the wound healing response of lesion.