(1/143) The eye in epidermolysis bullosa.

AIMS: To describe the ophthalmic findings in a large cohort of epidermolysis bullosa (EB) patients managed in one large specialist centre. METHODS: A case note review of consecutive patients seen at Great Ormond Street Children's Hospital. Data on the dermatological disease, ophthalmic history, and examination were collected and coded onto a data sheet. RESULTS: 181 patients: 50 (28%) simplex EB; 15 (8%) junctional EB; 28 (15%) autosomal dominant dystrophic EB; 72 (40%) autosomal recessive dystrophic EB; nine patients (5%) with dystrophic EB whose inheritance could not be ascertained; and seven cases (4%) of EB that could not be classified. Ocular problems were found in 12% (n = 6) of simplex patients and 40% (n = 6) of those with junctional disease. One patient (of 28) in the autosomal dominant dystrophic group had ocular involvement and 51% (37/72) of patients in the autosomal recessive dystrophic group had ophthalmic complications: corneal (25/72), lid ectropions (3/72), lid blisters (5/72), and symblepharon (3/72). CONCLUSION: Ophthalmic complications are common in EB overall but the incidence varies widely with subtype. Ophthalmic complications are the most severe in the dystrophic recessive and junctional subtypes where there is a need for extra vigilance. The major treatment modality was use of ocular lubricants.  (+info)

(2/143) Epidermolysis bullosa: novel and de novo premature termination codon and deletion mutations in the plectin gene predict late-onset muscular dystrophy.

Epidermolysis bullosa (EB) with late-onset muscular dystrophy (EB-MD) is a hemidesmosomal variant of EB due to mutations in the plectin gene (PLEC1). The age of onset of muscle involvement has been noted to vary from infancy to the fourth decade of life. Immunofluorescence of the patients' skin and muscle biopsies is usually negative for staining with antibodies recognizing plectin, a large cytoskeleton-associated anchorage protein. In this study we report novel plectin mutations in two families with EB. In both families, the proband was a newborn with neonatal blistering with no evidence for muscle weakness as yet. Peripheral blood DNA was isolated and examined by heteroduplex scanning strategy, protein truncation test (PTT), and/or direct sequencing of the plectin gene. One of the probands was compound heterozygote for nonsense mutations E2005X/K4460X, and the proband in the second family was compound heterozygote for deletion mutations 5083delG/2745-9del21, the latter mutation extending from -9 to +12 at the intron 22/exon 23 border. The mutations K4460X and 5083delG were not present in either one of the parents, thus being de novo events. In both cases, nonpaternity was excluded by microsatellite marker analysis. The stop codon mutations are predicted to result in the synthesis of a truncated protein lacking the carboxy-terminal globular domain of the protein and possibly causing nonsense-mediated decay of the corresponding mRNA. The 2745-9del21 deletion mutation abolishes the splice site at the intron 22/exon 23 junction, predicting abnormal splicing events. Because plectin deficiency is associated with muscular dystrophy, molecular diagnostics of the plectin gene provides prognostic value in evaluation of these patients who appear to be at risk to develop muscular dystrophy.  (+info)

(3/143) Rudimentary hemidesmosome formation in congenital generalized junctional epidermolysis bullosa in the Sprague-Dawley rat.

Seven of 14 newborn pups in a litter of Sprague-Dawley rats were found to have generalized detachment of the epidermis, which was thin, wrinkled, and hung in loose folds over distal extremities. Histologic and ultrastructural examination of the skin showed noninflammatory separation of the epidermis from the dermis at the lamina lucida of the basement membrane zone. Ultrastructurally, hemidesmosomes were small and had a rudimentary appearance; keratin tonofilaments in basal keratinocytes were detached from the hemidesmosomes. The skin lesions were consistent with generalized junctional epidermolysis bullosa, which has not previously been reported in the rat. In humans, generalized junctional epidermolysis bullosa is most commonly caused by autosomal recessive inheritance of defective proteins of the hemidesmosomes or anchoring filaments. The specific protein defect involved in the rat lesion was not determined because fresh frozen tissue was not available.  (+info)

(4/143) Deposition of laminin 5 by keratinocytes regulates integrin adhesion and signaling.

Deposition of laminin 5 over exposed dermal collagen in epidermal wounds is an early event in repair of the basement membrane. We report that deposition of laminin 5 onto collagen switches adhesion and signaling from collagen-dependent to laminin 5-dependent. Ligation of laminin 5 by integrin alpha(6)beta(4) activates phosphoinositide 3-OH-kinase (PI3K) signaling. This activation allows for adhesion and spreading via integrin alpha(3)beta(1) on laminin 5 independent of RhoGTPase, a regulator of actin stress fibers. In contrast, adhesion and spreading on collagen via alpha(2)beta(1) is Rho-dependent and is inhibited by toxin B, a Rho inhibitor. Deposition of laminin 5 and ligation of alpha(6)beta(4) increases PI3K-dependent production of phosphoinositide di- and triphosphates, PI3K activity, and phosphorylation of downstream target protein c-Jun NH(2)-terminal kinase. Conversely, blocking laminin 5-deposition with brefeldin A, an inhibitor of vesicle transport, or with anti-laminin 5 monoclonal antibodies abolishes the PI3K-dependent spreading mediated by alpha(3)beta(1) and phosphorylation of c-Jun NH(2)-terminal kinase. Studies with keratinocytes lacking alpha(6)beta(4) or laminin 5 confirm that deposition of laminin 5 and ligation by alpha(6)beta(4) are required for PI3K-dependent spreading via alpha(3)beta(1). We suggest that deposition of laminin 5 onto the collagen substratum, as in wound repair, enables human foreskin keratinocytes to interact via alpha(6)beta(4) and to switch from a RhoGTPase-dependent adhesion on collagen to a PI3K-dependent adhesion and spreading mediated by integrin alpha(3)beta(1) on laminin 5.  (+info)

(5/143) Hemizygosity for a glycine substitution in collagen XVII: unfolding and degradation of the ectodomain.

Defects of collagen XVII, a keratinocyte adhesion protein, are associated with epidermal detachment in junctional epidermolysis bullosa. Although some missense mutations in the collagen XVII gene COL17A1 have been described, the molecular mechanisms leading to disease have remained elusive in these cases. Here we assessed the biologic consequences of a missense mutation by studying the folding and stability of wild-type and mutated recombinant collagen XVII domains. The mutation occurred in a junctional epidermolysis bullosa patient who was compound heterozygous for the novel glycine substitution mutation G633D and the novel nonsense mutation R145X. Collagen XVII mRNA was significantly reduced, indicating nonsense-mediated mRNA degradation and hemizygosity of the patient for the G633D substitution. As glycine residues within the collagen triple helices are important for stable conformation, the thermal stability of the wild-type and mutated eukaryotic recombinant Col15 domain of collagen XVII was assessed. The stability of the mutated fragment was clearly reduced. The midpoint of the helix-to-coil transition, Tm, was 5 degrees C lower than that of wild-type rCol15, indicating abnormal triple-helix folding and susceptibility to proteolysis. Consistently, immunoassays demonstrated reduced amounts of the full-length collagen XVII and absence of the soluble ectodomain in keratinocyte cultures, and lack of the ectodomain from the junctional epidermolysis bullosa skin. These observations show that the glycine substitution G633D in collagen XVII causes abnormal folding and susceptibility to degradation, and thus perturbs the physiologic adhesive functions of collagen XVII in the skin.  (+info)

(6/143) Compound heterozygosity for a point mutation and a deletion located at splice acceptor sites in the LAMB3 gene leads to generalized atrophic benign epidermolysis bullosa.

An autosomal recessive disorder, generalized atrophic benign epidermolysis bullosa, is a rare form of nonlethal type junctional epidermolysis bullosa. It is associated not only with skin fragility but also with other unique clinical features including widespread atrophic skin changes, alopecia, reduced axillary and pubic hair, dysplastic teeth, and dystrophic nails. The majority of generalized atrophic benign epidermolysis bullosa cases are caused by mutations in the COL17A1 gene coding for type XVII collagen (or the 180 kDa bullous pemphigoid antigen). Another candidate gene for mutations in some forms of generalized atrophic benign epidermolysis bullosa is LAMB3 encoding the beta3 chain of laminin 5. This report documents compound heterozygosity for novel mutations in LAMB3 of a Japanese patient showing typical clinical features of generalized atrophic benign epidermolysis bullosa. One is an A-to-G transversion at the splice acceptor site of intron 14, which is designated as a 1977-2A-->G mutation; the other is a deletion of 94 bp located at the junction of intron 18 and exon 19, which is a 2702-29del94 mutation. Reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction analysis suggested skipping of exon 19 in LAMB3 mRNA produced from the allele with 2702-29del94 and impaired stability of the aberrant mRNA transcribed from the second allele with the 1977-2A-->G mutation.  (+info)

(7/143) Reduced expression of the epithelial adhesion ligand laminin 5 in the skin causes intradermal tissue separation.

Laminin 5, the major keratinocyte adhesion ligand, is found in the lamina lucida subregion of the epidermal basement membrane of the skin, where it colocalizes with the anchoring filaments. Mutations in the genes encoding laminin 5 cause junctional epidermolysis bullosa, an inherited skin blistering disease characterized by abnormal hemidesmosomes and cleavage of the lamina lucida leading to epidermal detachment. In this work we describe the genetic basis of a new subtype of lethal inherited epidermolysis bullosa associated with reduced skin reactivity to laminin 5, presence of mature hemidesmosomes, and intradermal cleavage of the skin. The epidermolysis bullosa patients were heterozygous for a nonsense mutation (Q896X) and a splice site mutation (764-10T-->G) in the gene (LAMC2) for the gamma2 chain of laminin 5. The nonsense mutation causes accelerated decay of the corresponding mRNA, while the splice site mutation results in maturation of a cryptic wild-type gamma2 mRNA leading to reduced expression of wild-type laminin 5. In vitro studies using the probands' keratinocytes showed that secretion of reduced amounts of functional laminin 5 in the patient, although permitting formation of hemidesmosomes, fail to restore efficient cell adhesion. Our results provide the first evidence that laminin 5 contributes to the firm adhesion of the epithelial basement membrane to the underlying stroma. They also show that a low expression level of laminin 5 induces assembly of mature hemidesmosomes in vivo but fails to assure a stable cohesion of the dermal-epidermal junction.  (+info)

(8/143) The short arm of the laminin gamma2 chain plays a pivotal role in the incorporation of laminin 5 into the extracellular matrix and in cell adhesion.

Laminin 5 is a basement membrane component that actively promotes adhesion and migration of epithelial cells. Laminin 5 undergoes extracellular proteolysis of the gamma2 chain that removes the NH(2)-terminal short arm of the polypeptide and reduces the size of laminin 5 from 440 to 400 kD. The functional consequence of this event remains obscure, although lines of evidence indicate that cleavage of the gamma2 chain potently stimulated scattering and migration of keratinocytes and cancer cells. To define the biological role of the gamma2 chain short arm, we expressed mutated gamma2 cDNAs into immortalized gamma2-null keratinocytes. By immunofluorescence and immunohistochemical studies, cell detachment, and adhesion assays, we found that the gamma2 short arm drives deposition of laminin 5 into the extracellular matrix (ECM) and sustains cell adhesion. Our results demonstrate that the unprocessed 440-kD form of laminin 5 is a biologically active adhesion ligand, and that the gamma2 globular domain IV is involved in intermolecular interactions that mediate integration of laminin 5 in the ECM and cell attachment.  (+info)