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Papers of the Week

Papers: 18 Apr 2020 - 24 Apr 2020

Animal Studies


2020 Apr 22

J Neuroinflammation



Mouse connective tissue mast cell proteases tryptase and carboxypeptidase A3 play protective roles in itch induced by endothelin-1.


Magnúsdóttir EI, Grujic M, Bergman J, Pejler G, Lagerström MC
J Neuroinflammation. 2020 Apr 22; 17(1):123.
PMID: 32321525.


Itch is an unpleasant sensation that can be debilitating, especially if it is chronic and of non-histaminergic origin, as treatment options are limited. Endothelin-1 (ET-1) is a potent endogenous vasoconstrictor that also has the ability to induce a burning, non-histaminergic pruritus when exogenously administered, by activating the endothelin A receptor (ETR) on primary afferents. ET-1 is released endogenously by several cell-types found in the skin, including macrophages and keratinocytes. Mast cells express ETRs and can thereby be degranulated by ET-1, and mast cell proteases chymase and carboxypeptidase A3 (CPA3) are known to either generate or degrade ET-1, respectively, suggesting a role for mast cell proteases in the regulation of ET-1-induced itch. The mouse mast cell proteases (mMCPs) mMCP4 (chymase), mMCP6 (tryptase), and CPA3 are found in connective tissue type mast cells and are the closest functional homologs to human mast cell proteases, but little is known about their role in endothelin-induced itch.