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Papers of the Week

Papers: 15 Jun 2024 - 21 Jun 2024

2024 Jun 18

J Invest Dermatol


A Review of Atomic-Force Microscopy in Skin Barrier Function Assessment.


Pereda J, Milde Khatib C, Kezic S, Christensen MO, Yang S, Thyssen JP, Chu CY, Riethmüller C, Liao HS, Akhtar I, Ungar B, Guttman-Yassky E, Hædersdal M, Hwu ET


Skin barrier function (SBF) disorders are a class of pathologies that affect a significant portion of the world population. These disorders cause skin lesions with intense itch, impacting patients’ physical and psychological well-being as well as their social functioning. It is in the interest of patients that their disorder be monitored closely while under treatment to evaluate the effectiveness of the ongoing therapy and any potential adverse reactions. Symptom-based assessment techniques are widely used by clinicians; however, they carry some limitations. Techniques to assess skin barrier impairment are critical for understanding the nature of the disease and for helping personalize treatment. This review recalls the anatomy of the skin barrier and describes an atomic-force microscopy approach to quantitatively monitor its disorders and their response to treatment. We review a panel of studies that show that this technique is highly relevant for SBF disorder research, and we aim to motivate its adoption into clinical settings.