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Numerous strains of mice with defined mutations display pronounced abnormalities of hair follicle cycling, even in the absence of overt alterations of the skin and hair phenotype; however, in order to recognize even subtle, hair cycle-related abnormalities, it is critically important to be able to determine accurately and classify the major stages of the(More)
Hair is a primary characteristic of mammals, and exerts a wide range of functions including thermoregulation, physical protection, sensory activity, and social interactions. The hair shaft consists of terminally differentiated keratinocytes that are produced by the hair follicle. Hair follicle development takes place during fetal skin development and relies(More)
The skin is a known target organ for the proopiomelanocortin (POMC)-derived neuropeptides alpha-melanocyte stimulating hormone (alpha-MSH), beta-endorphin, and ACTH and also a source of these peptides. Skin expression levels of the POMC gene and POMC/corticotropin releasing hormone (CRH) peptides are not static but are determined by such factors as the(More)
BACKGROUND The skin is responsible for forming a variety of epidermal structures that differ amongst vertebrates. In each case the specific structure (for example scale, feather or hair) arises from an epidermal placode as a result of epithelial-mesenchymal interactions with the underlying dermal mesenchyme. Expression of members of the Wnt, Hedgehog and(More)
The skin offers an ideally suited, clinically relevant model for studying the crossroads between peripheral and systemic responses to stress. A 'brain-skin connection' with local neuroimmunoendocrine circuitry underlies the pathogenesis of allergic and inflammatory skin diseases, triggered or aggravated by stress. In stressed mice, corticotropin-releasing(More)
The induction of developmental structures derived from the ectoderm, such as the neural tube or tooth, occurs through neutralization of the inhibitory activity of members of the bone-morphogenetic protein (BMP) family by BMP antagonists. Here we show that, during hair-follicle development, the neural inducer and BMP-neutralizing protein Noggin is expressed(More)
Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) plays a crucial role for the survival of visceral sensory neurons during development. However, the physiological sources and the function of BDNF in the adult viscera are poorly described. We have investigated the cellular sources and the potential role of BDNF in adult murine viscera. We found markedly different(More)
The skin and its major appendages are prominent target organs and potent sources of key players along the classical hypothalamic-pituitary axis, such as corticotropin releasing hormone (CRH), adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH), and alpha melanocyte stimulating hormone (alpha-MSH), and even express key steroidogenic enzymes. Therefore, it may have(More)
BACKGROUND   The cause of follicular occlusion, a key early event in the pathogenesis of hidradenitis suppurativa (HS), also known as acne inversa, remains unknown. OBJECTIVES To identify changes, if any, in the antimicrobial peptide (AMP) and cytokine expression profile of HS affected human skin. METHODS Quantitative immunohistomorphometry was used to(More)