Characterization of lymphocyte-dependent angiogenesis using a SCID mouse: human skin model of psoriasis

J Investig Dermatol Symp Proc. 2000 Dec;5(1):67-73. doi: 10.1046/j.1087-0024.2000.00006.x.


From a clinical perspective, angiogenesis is an important component of acute and chronic psoriatic skin lesions as they are erythematous and display a tendency to bleed after superficial removal of scale. By routine histology, numerous microscopic vascular abnormalities are also present. The structural expansion of capillaries and distinctive activated phenotype of lesional endothelial cells are believed not only to be clinical and pathologic hallmarks of the disease, but to play a central role in the pathogenesis of psoriatic plaques. Despite over 20 years of research by leading angiogenesis experts and numerous studies, many details regarding the cellular and molecular basis for angiogenesis in psoriasis remain unknown. In this review, 10 different sections are presented to update recent progress in this active field of investigative skin biology. Highlights of this review include the phenotypic characterization of endothelial cells in acute and chronic psoriatic plaques, and a review of a novel animal model of psoriasis using human skin engrafted onto severe combined immunodeficient mice followed by injection of activated immunocytes. This new experimental model represents a reproducible and pharmacologically validated method to trigger neovascularization and bona fide psoriatic plaque formation. In addition, the potential contribution of epidermal keratinocytes and dermal macrophages to the angiogenic tissue reaction is presented, and a series of questions are then posed that can be answered using the severe combined immunodeficient mouse model of psoriasis. Finally, a model is proposed integrating all available data into a coherent multistep reaction schema that includes active participation by multiple cell types including natural killer T cells, keratinocytes, macrophages, and microvascular endothelial cells.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Humans
  • Lymphocytes / physiology*
  • Mice
  • Mice, SCID
  • Neovascularization, Pathologic / immunology*
  • Neovascularization, Pathologic / pathology
  • Psoriasis / immunology*
  • Psoriasis / pathology
  • Psoriasis / physiopathology*
  • Skin / blood supply
  • Skin / immunology
  • Skin / pathology