Endocytosis of IgG, Desmoglein 1, and Plakoglobin in Pemphigus Foliaceus Patient Skin.

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Endocytosis of IgG, Desmoglein 1, and Plakoglobin in Pemphigus Foliaceus Patient Skin.

Front Immunol. 2019;10:2635

Authors: Oktarina DAM, Sokol E, Kramer D, Jonkman MF, Pas HH

Pemphigus foliaceus (PF) is one of the two main forms of pemphigus and is characterized by circulating IgG to the desmosomal cadherin desmoglein 1 (DSG1) and by subcorneal blistering of the skin. The pathomechanism of blister formation in PF is unknown. Previously we have shown that PF IgG induces aggregation of DSG1, plakoglobin (PG), and IgG outside of desmosomes, what in immunofluorescence of PF patient skin visualizes as a granular IgG deposition pattern with a limited number of coarse IgG aggregates between cells. Here we have investigated the fate of these aggregates in skin and found that these are cleared by endocytosis. We performed double immunofluorescence staining on snap-frozen skin biopsies of six PF patients for the following molecules: IgG, the desmosomal proteins DSG1 and DSG3, desmocollins 1 and 3, PG, desmoplakin and plakophilin 3, and for the endosomal marker early endosomal antigen 1 and the lysosomal markers cathepsin D and lysosomal-associated membrane protein 1. Endosomes were present in all cells but did not make contact with the aggregates in the basal and suprabasal layers. In the higher layers they moored to the aggregates, often symmetrically from two adjacent cells, and IgG, DSG1, and PG were taken up. Finally these endosomes became localized perinuclear. Endocytosis was only observed in perilesional or lesional skin but not in non-lesional skin. Older immunoelectron microscopic studies have suggested that in PF skin endocytosis of detached desmosomes takes place but we found no other desmosomal proteins to be present in these endosomes. Double staining with cathepsin D and LAMP-1 revealed no overlap with IgG, DSG1, or PG suggesting that lysosomes have no role in the clearing process. Collectively, our results show that endocytosis is part of the pathogenic process in PF but that no detached desmosomes are taken up but instead the deposited IgG is taken up together with DSG1 and PG.

PMID: 31781120 [PubMed – in process]

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