I am a
Home I AM A Search Login

Papers of the Week

Papers: 2 Mar 2024 - 7 Mar 2024

2024 Feb 29

J Invest Dermatol


Staphylococcus aureus: The Bug Behind the Itch in Atopic Dermatitis.


Gallo RL, Horswill AR


Pruritus or itch is a defining symptom of atopic dermatitis (AD). The origins of itch are complex, and it is considered both a defense mechanism and a cause of disease that leads to inflammation and psychological stress. Considerable progress has been made in understanding the processes that trigger itch, particularly the pruritoceptive origins that are generated in the skin. This perspective review discusses the implications of a recent observation that the V8 protease expressed by Staphylococcus aureus can directly trigger sensory neurons in the skin through activation of protease-activated receptor 1. This may be a key to understanding why itch is so common in AD because S. aureus commonly overgrows in this disease owing to deficient antimicrobial defense from both the epidermis and the cutaneous microbiome. Increased understanding of the role of microbes in AD provides increased opportunities for safely improving the treatment of this disorder.