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Topical Application of a Vitamin D Analogue Exacerbates Atopic Dermatitis and Induces the Atopic Dermatitis-like Phenotype in Stat6VT Mice

Authors

  • Matthew J. Turner M.D., Ph.D.,

    Corresponding author
    • Department of Dermatology, Indiana University, Indianapolis, Indiana
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  • Sonia C. DaSilva-Arnold M.S.,

    1. Department of Dermatology, Indiana University, Indianapolis, Indiana
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  • Qiaofang Yi B.S.,

    1. Department of Dermatology, Indiana University, Indianapolis, Indiana
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  • Purvi Mehrotra Ph.D.,

    1. Department of Pediatrics, Herman B. Wells Center for Pediatric Research, Indiana University, Indianapolis, Indiana
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  • Mark H. Kaplan Ph.D.,

    1. Department of Pediatrics, Herman B. Wells Center for Pediatric Research, Indiana University, Indianapolis, Indiana
    2. Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Indiana University, Indianapolis, Indiana
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  • Jeffrey B. Travers M.D., Ph.D.

    1. Department of Dermatology, Indiana University, Indianapolis, Indiana
    2. Department of Pediatrics, Herman B. Wells Center for Pediatric Research, Indiana University, Indianapolis, Indiana
    3. Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Indiana University, Indianapolis, Indiana
    4. Richard L. Roudebush Veterans Affairs Medical Center, School of Medicine, Indiana University, Indianapolis, Indiana
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Address correspondence to Matthew J. Turner, M.D., Ph.D., Department of Dermatology, Indiana University, 545 Barnhill Dr., EH 139, Indianapolis, IN 46202, or e-mail: turner41@iupui.edu.

Abstract

Calcipotriene is a topical vitamin D3 analogue approved for the treatment of plaque and scalp psoriasis. We report the case of a 2-year-old boy whose atopic dermatitis (AD) flared in response to application of calcipotriene 0.005% cream and solution for a mistaken diagnosis of plaque and scalp psoriasis. We investigated whether the patient's eruption was secondary to an allergic contact dermatitis. In the Stat6VT mouse model of AD we tested whether calcipotriene could induce the otherwise-spontaneous AD-like phenotype. Closed patch testing was done on the patient with calcipotriene solution and cream, moisturizing cream, and 51% isopropanol. Stat6VT and wild-type (WT) mice were treated for 7 days with calcipotriene solution or vehicle (isopropanol) applied to the right and left upper back skin, respectively, after which mice were followed longitudinally for 10 weeks. Biopsy specimens from prior treatment sites were then collected for histology and RNA isolation. RNA was analyzed for interleukin (IL-4) expression using quantitative polymerase chain reaction. Patch testing was negative. Stat6VT mice, in contrast to WT mice, developed a persistent eczematous dermatitis at sites of calcipotriene application. Clinical and histologic features and high IL-4 transcript levels were consistent with the spontaneous AD-like phenotype seen in Stat6VT mice. At sites of active disease, calcipotriene can worsen a flare of AD. In Stat6VT mice, calcipotriene can induce the AD-like phenotype.

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