Skin-infiltrating, interleukin-22–producing T cells differentiate pediatric psoriasis from adult psoriasis

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Abstract

Background:

Evidence from adult psoriasis studies implicates an imbalance between regulatory and effector T cells, particularly TH-17–producing T cells, in the pathogenesis of psoriasis. Little is known about the immunopathology of psoriasis in children.

Objective:

We sought to functionally characterize the inflammatory cell profiles of psoriatic plaques from pediatric patients and compare them with healthy, age-matched controls and adult psoriasis patients.

Methods:

Skin samples from pediatric psoriasis patients and healthy controls were analyzed by multiparameter flow cytometry to determine the dominant immune cell subsets present and cytokines produced.

Results:

Lesional tissue from pediatric psoriasis patients had significantly increased interleukin (IL) 22 derived from CD4+ and CD8+ cells compared with the tissues from healthy pediatric controls and adult psoriasis patients. Tissue from pediatric psoriasis patients had significantly less elevation of IL-17 derived from CD4+ and CD8+ cells compared with the tissue from adult psoriasis patients. In contrast with the lesions from adult patients, lesional skin in pediatric patients with psoriasis did not have increases in regulatory T cells.

Limitations:

This is a pilot study, thus the sample size is small.

Conclusion:

Significant differences in IL-17 and IL-22 expression were observed in the pediatric psoriasis patients compared with pediatric healthy controls and adult psoriasis patients. IL-22 might be relevant in the pathogenesis of pediatric psoriasis and represents a potential treatment target unique to pediatric psoriasis.

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