Psoriasis is a prevalent, chronic inflammatory disease of the skin, mediated by crosstalk between epidermal keratinocytes, dermal vascular cells, and immunocytes such as antigen presenting cells (APCs) and T cells. Exclusive cellular "responsibility" for the induction and maintenance of psoriatic plaques has not been clearly defined. Increased proliferation of keratinocytes and endothelial cells in conjunction with APC/T cell/monocyte/macrophage inflammation leads to the distinct epidermal and vascular hyperplasia that is characteristic of lesional psoriatic skin. Despite the identification of numerous susceptibility loci, no single genetic determinant has been identified as responsible for the induction of psoriasis. Thus, numerous other triggers of disease, such as environmental, microbial and complex cellular interactions must also be considered as participants in the development of this multifactorial disease. Recent advances in therapeutics, especially systemic so-called "biologics" have provided new hope for identifying the critical cellular targets that drive psoriasis pathogenesis. Recent recognition of the numerous co-morbidities and other autoimmune disorders associated with psoriasis, including inflammatory bowel disease, multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, and systemic lupus erythematosus suggest common signaling elements and cellular mediators may direct disease pathogenesis. In this review, we discuss common cellular pathways and participants that mediate psoriasis and other autoimmune disorders that share these cellular signaling pathways.
Keywords: autoimmunity; immunosuppression; psoriasis.