Several skin disorders are associated with impaired skin barrier function. Primary dysfunction is caused by monogenic defects in key components of the epidermis (for example ichthyoses). Secondary barrier impairment occurs in inflammatory dermatoses marked by disturbed epidermal homeostasis (eczema, psoriasis, etc.). In these disorders, inflammation impedes the synthesis or maintenance of skin barrier components. Recent evidence suggests a combination of primary and secondary barrier dysfunction in atopic dermatitis and, to a lesser extent, also in psoriasis. In the future, subtypes of atopic dermatitis may likely be defined, in which one or the other is prevalent.
© 2015 Deutsche Dermatologische Gesellschaft (DDG). Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.