Functions of the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR) alpha and beta in skin homeostasis, epithelial repair, and morphogenesis

J Investig Dermatol Symp Proc. 2006 Sep;11(1):30-5. doi: 10.1038/sj.jidsymp.5650007.


The three peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPAR alpha, PPAR beta, and PPAR gamma) are ligand-activated transcription factors belonging to the nuclear hormone receptor superfamily. They are regarded as being sensors of physiological levels of fatty acids and fatty acid derivatives. In the adult mouse skin, they are found in hair follicle keratinocytes but not in interfollicular epidermis keratinocytes. Skin injury stimulates the expression of PPAR alpha and PPAR beta at the site of the wound. Here, we review the spatiotemporal program that triggers PPAR beta expression immediately after an injury, and then gradually represses it during epithelial repair. The opposing effects of the tumor necrosis factor-alpha and transforming growth factor-beta-1 signalling pathways on the activity of the PPAR beta promoter are the key elements of this regulation. We then compare the involvement of PPAR beta in the skin in response to an injury and during hair morphogenesis, and underscore the similarity of its action on cell survival in both situations.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cyclooxygenase 2 / physiology
  • Epithelial Cells / physiology
  • Hair Follicle / growth & development
  • Homeostasis*
  • Humans
  • Keratinocytes / physiology
  • Morphogenesis
  • PPAR alpha / physiology*
  • PPAR-beta / physiology*
  • Skin Physiological Phenomena*
  • Wound Healing / physiology*


  • PPAR alpha
  • PPAR-beta
  • Cyclooxygenase 2