Differential expression of fatty acid transport proteins in epidermis and skin appendages

J Invest Dermatol. 2005 Dec;125(6):1174-81. doi: 10.1111/j.0022-202X.2005.23934.x.


Epidermis and sebocyte-derived lipids are derived both from de novo synthesis and through uptake of fatty acids from the circulation. Plasma membrane proteins can significantly contribute to the latter process. In particular, fatty acid transport proteins (FATP/solute carrier family 27) are integral transmembrane proteins that enhance the uptake of long-chain fatty acids into cells. Using specific antisera against all six mammalian FATP, we found that both human and mouse skin express FATP1, -3, -4, and -6. In adult skin, FATP1 and -3 are expressed predominantly by keratinocytes, whereas FATP4 is strongly expressed by sebaceous glands and FATP6 by hair follicle epithelia. Sustained barrier disruption leads to increases in FATP1 and -6 levels as well as a robust increase in CD36 protein. Notably, expression of FATP1 by embryonic keratinocytes at day 18.5 was lower, and FATP4 increased in comparison with adult epidermis. Together, these findings indicate that FATP are not only expressed by different cell types within the skin, but also that their localization is dynamically regulated during development.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adipose Tissue / physiology
  • Animals
  • Epidermis / metabolism*
  • Fatty Acid Transport Proteins / genetics*
  • Hair Follicle / physiology
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Mice
  • Sebaceous Glands / physiology
  • Skin / metabolism*
  • Skin Aging
  • Species Specificity


  • Fatty Acid Transport Proteins
  • SLC27A1 protein, human
  • SLC27A4 protein, human
  • Slc27a1 protein, mouse
  • Slc27a4 protein, mouse