Keratinocyte Expression of A20/TNFAIP3 Controls Skin Inflammation Associated with Atopic Dermatitis and Psoriasis

Michael Devos, Denis A. Mogilenko, Sébastien Fleury, Barbara Gilbert, Coralie Becquart, Sandrine Quemener, Hélène Dehondt, Peter Tougaard, Bart Staels, Claus Bachert, Peter Vandenabeele, Geert Van Loo, Delphine Staumont-Salle, Wim Declercq, David Dombrowicz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Keratinocytes are key players in chronic inflammatory skin diseases. A20 regulates NF-κB–dependent expression of proinflammatory genes and cell death, but the impact of its expression in keratinocytes on systemic inflammation and skin disorders has not been determined. Comparative transcriptomic analysis of microdissected epidermis showed that A20 is down-regulated in involved epidermis, but not in dermis, of psoriasis and atopic dermatitis patients, suggesting that loss of A20 expression in keratinocytes increases the vulnerability for psoriasis/atopic dermatitis induction. We have previously shown that epidermis-specific A20 knockout mice (A20EKO) develop mild epidermal hyperplasia but no macroscopic skin inflammation. We now show that various cytokines and chemokines are up-regulated in A20EKO mouse skin. A20EKO mice also display systemic proinflammatory changes, even in the absence of skin immune cell infiltration, and an exacerbated disease severity upon induction of experimental psoriasis, atopic dermatitis, or skin barrier disruption. Keratinocytes showed increased proinflammatory gene expression in the absence of A20 in unstimulated and IL-17A–stimulated conditions, in part resulting from uncontrolled MyD88-dependent signaling. Our findings indicate that absence of A20 in keratinocytes leads to systemic inflammation at homeostatic conditions and is sufficient to exacerbate inflammatory skin disorders associated with different immune profiles by increasing cytokine and chemokine expression.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)135-145
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Investigative Dermatology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2019


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