Evidence for an alternative pathway of keratinocyte maturation in psoriasis from an antigen found in psoriatic but not normal epidermis

J Invest Dermatol. 1984 Oct;83(4):296-301. doi: 10.1111/1523-1747.ep12340429.


We have isolated a murine monoclonal antibody, called psi-3, which immunolabels maturing keratinocytes in psoriatic skin but not in normal epidermis. The staining is cytoplasmic and is not extractable with 1% Triton X-100, which suggests that the psi-3 antigen is a structural component of the keratinocyte. Neither basal cells nor invading inflammatory cells are stained in psoriatic skin and the antigen appears to be associated specifically with maturing and not proliferating keratinocytes. Keratinocytes cultured in vitro from skin from nonpsoriatic individuals display the antigen in a granular pattern in differentiated cells. The antigen is also expressed after tape-stripping of normal skin and, therefore, represents an inducible product of normal keratinocytes. The antigen is destroyed by proteinase K and appears to be a protein. On discontinuous sodium dodecyl sulfate-gel electrophoresis, the antigen has been found to have a molecular weight of 135,000. The psi-3 antigen is interpreted as a new keratinocyte product expressed in psoriasis, culture, wound healing, and certain other pathologic skin conditions. The synthesis of such a new antigen would not be expected if keratinocyte maturation in psoriasis is a truncated version of the normal system and supports the hypothesis that psoriatic keratinocytes are following an alternative pathway. Results using experimental injury suggest that the psoriatic pathway is normally expressed during wound healing.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / immunology*
  • Antigens / immunology*
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Cytoskeleton / immunology
  • Electrophoresis, Polyacrylamide Gel
  • Fluorescent Antibody Technique
  • Humans
  • Hybridomas
  • Keratins
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Psoriasis / immunology*
  • Psoriasis / pathology
  • Skin / immunology
  • Skin / pathology*
  • Wound Healing


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Antigens
  • Keratins