The role of group IIF-secreted phospholipase A2 in epidermal homeostasis and hyperplasia

J Exp Med. 2015 Oct 19;212(11):1901-19. doi: 10.1084/jem.20141904. Epub 2015 Oct 5.


Epidermal lipids are important for skin homeostasis. However, the entire picture of the roles of lipids, particularly nonceramide lipid species, in epidermal biology still remains obscure. Here, we report that PLA2G2F, a functionally orphan-secreted phospholipase A2 expressed in the suprabasal epidermis, regulates skin homeostasis and hyperplasic disorders. Pla2g2f(-/-) mice had a fragile stratum corneum and were strikingly protected from psoriasis, contact dermatitis, and skin cancer. Conversely, Pla2g2f-overexpressing transgenic mice displayed psoriasis-like epidermal hyperplasia. Primary keratinocytes from Pla2g2f(-) (/-) mice showed defective differentiation and activation. PLA2G2F was induced by calcium or IL-22 in keratinocytes and preferentially hydrolyzed ethanolamine plasmalogen-bearing docosahexaenoic acid secreted from keratinocytes to give rise to unique bioactive lipids (i.e., protectin D1 and 9S-hydroxyoctadecadienoic acid) that were distinct from canonical arachidonate metabolites (prostaglandins and leukotrienes). Ethanolamine lysoplasmalogen, a PLA2G2F-derived marker product, rescued defective activation of Pla2g2f(-/-) keratinocytes both in vitro and in vivo. Our results highlight PLA2G2F as a previously unrecognized regulator of skin pathophysiology and point to this enzyme as a novel drug target for epidermal-hyperplasic diseases.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Dermatitis, Contact / pathology
  • Epidermis / pathology*
  • Group II Phospholipases A2 / physiology*
  • Homeostasis*
  • Humans
  • Hyperplasia
  • Keratinocytes / cytology
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Psoriasis / pathology
  • Skin Neoplasms / etiology


  • Group II Phospholipases A2
  • Pla2g2f protein, mouse