Number of cell layers of the stratum corneum in normal skin – relationship to the anatomical location on the body, age, sex and physical parameters

  title={Number of cell layers of the stratum corneum in normal skin – relationship to the anatomical location on the body, age, sex and physical parameters},
  author={Zeng Ya-xian and Takaki Suetake and Hachiro Tagami},
  journal={Archives of Dermatological Research},
Abstract We counted the number of cell layers in the stratum corneum (SC) of normal skin taken from different anatomical locations of the body of 301 individuals of various ages. Frozen 6 μm thick sections were stained with a 1% aqueous solution of safranin and observed under a microscope after application of 2% KOH solution. There were great variations in the number of SC cell layers (mean ± SD) according to location and among different individuals. The smallest number was found in genital… 

Epidermal thickness at different body sites: relationship to age, gender, pigmentation, blood content, skin type and smoking habits.

Body site largely explains the variation in epidermal thickness, but also a significant individual variation was observed, and thickness of the stratum corneum and cellular epidermis correlated positively to blood content and was greater in males than in females.

Location‐related differences in structure and function of the stratum corneum with special emphasis on those of the facial skin

  • H. Tagami
  • Medicine
    International journal of cosmetic science
  • 2008
There are remarkable regional differences not only in the living skin tissue but also even in such thin SC reflecting the function of each anatomical location, particularly between the face and other portions of the body.

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Investigation of the thickness of the stratum corneum inBasal cell carcinoma indicates that SC thickness is relatively constant in BCC.

The Number of Stratum corneum Cell Layers Correlates with the Pseudo-Absorption of the Corneocytes

The pseudo-absorption of the corneocytes can be used to calculate the absolute number of cell layers removed with a standard deviation of less than 11% and the SC can be quantified using the procedure of tape stripping in combination with the spectroscopic determination of the Corneocytes.

Distinct locational differences observable in biophysical functions of the facial skin: with special emphasis on the poor functional properties of the stratum corneum of the perioral region

In general, the SC barrier function increases with age, probably because of a decreased epidermal turnover rate as recognized by the increase in corneocyte size, and among the various sites, the skin of the nasolabial fold and chin showed poorest SC properties in barrier function, suggesting the presence of mild invisible inflammation.

Functional and structural age-related changes in the scalp skin of Caucasian women.

  • P. FlorenceC. Cornillon G. Loussouarn
  • Medicine
    Skin research and technology : official journal of International Society for Bioengineering and the Skin (ISBS) [and] International Society for Digital Imaging of Skin (ISDIS) [and] International Society for Skin Imaging
  • 2013
With ageing, some few functional and structural changes are observed in the scalp of Caucasian women, similar to those previously reported in other skin sites.

Functional analysis of the stratum corneum of scalp skin: studies in patients with alopecia areata and androgenetic alopecia

It is concluded that the SC of the scalp skin in humans is functionally distinct from that of the face and extremities.

Stratum Corneum Cell Layers

Despite its most important role in the skin as a barrier membrane, the structural intactness of the stratum corneum (SC) has rather been neglected in histological examination because of its

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Functional characteristics of the stratum corneum in photoaged skin in comparison with those found in intrinsic aging

  • H. Tagami
  • Medicine
    Archives of Dermatological Research
  • 2007
Despite the decreased water content of the SC, elderly people can live without any inconvenience even when they expose the facial skin to the dry environment of winter, because there take place sebum excretion and non-apparent sweating by comparison with the skin of the sun-protected areas such as the trunk and limbs that easily develop xerotic changes in cold seasons.



Regional differences in the thickness (cell layers) of the human stratum corneum: an ultrastructural analysis.

Significant regional variation in both the mean thickness and the mean number of cell layers has been documented for four selected , sample regions of the body of a population of six adult volunteers, and for two more homogeneous subgroups separated by sex and age.

Human stratum corneum lipids: characterization and regional variations.

The first detailed, quantitative analysis of human stratum corneum lipids and information about the variability in lipid composition at four skin sites with known differences in permeability suggest that variations in neutral lipids, rather than sphingolipids, may underlie local variations in skin permeability.

Functional analyses of the superficial stratum corneum in atopic xerosis.

Atopic xerosis, the dry skin of patients with atopic dermatitis, shows various stratum corneum functional impairments, probably reflecting increased epidermal proliferation due to a low-level ongoing dermatitis.

Quantitative measurements of water concentration of the stratum corneum in vivo by high-frequency current.

  • H. Tagami
  • Materials Science
    Acta dermato-venereologica. Supplementum
  • 1994
It is established that high-frequency conductance is a non-invasive technique which measures the hydration state of the superficial portion of the SC, the crucial part determining the physical properties of the skin surface.

Evaluation of the skin surface hydration in vivo by electrical measurement.

The highly hygroscopic nature of the stratum corneum is demonstrated, lesser hydration on the extremities that on the trunk, the decreased water-holding capacity of scaly lesions despite the increased transepidermal water loss, and the water supplying ability of skin emollients are demonstrated.

Regional variation of nonimmunologic contact urticaria. Functional map of the human face.

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    Skin pharmacology : the official journal of the Skin Pharmacology Society
  • 1996
This information provides a basis to further study the frequent poorly understood intolerance of the face to topical formulation and a significant correlation was noted between stratum corneum hydration and irritation.

Electron probe analysis of human skin: determination of the water concentration profile.

The dominance of the water profile by a discontinuity suggests water loss is governed by a partitioned process, presumably a partitioning into the lipid domain.


  • C. Blair
  • Materials Science, Biology
    The British journal of dermatology
  • 1968
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Contact allergy in patients with periorbital eczema: an analysis of allergens. Data recorded by the Information Network of the Departments of Dermatology.

Antibiotics, phenylephrine and thimerosal could be determined to be the leading allergens responsible for allergic periorbital eczema.


The anatomy of the horny layer is usually spoiled beyond recognition by tissue processing, whereas in fact it is a coherent, plastic membrane which serves as the ''barrier against the inward and outward movement of all substances including water''.