Cellular and humoral components of the immune system of the skin

Open Access Open Access
Restricted Access Access granted
Restricted Access Subscription or Fee Access


Along with mucous membranes the skin as the main barrier to the outside world creates a system of protection against any influences of the world. It is not only the place of realization of immunological processes, but it also actively participates in them due to the existence of its own elements of the immune system which are able to actively participate in the development of inflammatory reactions and neoplastic processes. Skin cells interact with cells of the immune system by setting a direct contact or by secreting a number of soluble factors, called cytokines, and other protein components such as proteins of the complement system. The general concept of skin-associated lymphoid tissue and skin’s immune system with immunocompetent cells in the epidermis and dermis, for cooperation of which in various stages of the immune response requires identity concerning anti-genes of HLA system, is presented in the review. Thus, specific immunological reaction with antibody formation promote the release of antigen from the body of both exogenous and endogenous origin. However, at violation of any element of immunological protection there is a delay of antigen elimination process, that results in own tissue structural damage. Interaction with foreign antigens (physical, chemical, infectious, etc.), denaturation of its own proteins or disclosure of tissue structures (antigens), that did not contact with immunocompetent cells, promote the formation of autoantigens and the production of autoantibodies against them. Thus, skin is a highly organized structure with a network of immunocompetent cells and soluble mediators. Introduction of molecular and biological methods as a knowledge tool is continually expanding the information about the skin as an organ of the immune system. The gained knowledge will definitely promote the development of new therapeutic approaches to skin diseases.

Full Text

Restricted Access

About the authors

Natalie V. Makhneva

Moscow Regional Research and Clinical Institute

Email: makhneva@mail.ru
129110, Moscow, Russia
Doctor of Medical Sciences, Professor of Department of Dermato-venerology and Dermato-oncology, Postgraduate Training Faculty


  1. Скрипкин Ю.К., Лезвинская Е.М. Кожа - орган иммунной системы. Вестник дерматологии и венерологии. 1989; 10: 14-8.
  2. Персина И.С. Иммунная система кожи в норме и патологии. В кн.: Патология кожи. Мордовцев В.Н., Цветкова Г.М., ред. М.: Медицина; 1993. т. 1: 162-213.
  3. Amerio P., Carbone A., Auriemma M., Varrati S., Tulli A. UV induced skin immunosuppression. Anti-Inflammatory and Anti-Allergy Agents in Medicinal Chemistry. 2009; 8(1): 3-13.
  4. Demarchez M., Dallanegra A., Czernielewski J. Le système immunitaire de l’épiderme. Ann. Dermatol. Venereol. Masson. 1991; 118(2): 151-61.
  5. Robledo A.A. Skin associated lympphoid tisues (SALT). Its normal and pathological function. An. R. Acad. Nac. Med (Madr). 2006; 123(2): 367-77.
  6. Williams I.R., Kupper T.S. Immunity at the surface: homeostatic mechanisms of the skin immune system. Life Sci. 1996; 58(18): 1485-507.
  7. Базарный В.В. Иммунная система кожи. Мезотерапия. 2011; 14(2): 28-34.
  8. Рабсон А., Ройт А., Делвз П. Основы медицинской иммунологии. М.: Мир; 2006.
  9. Salmon J.K., Armstrong C.A., Ansel J.C. The skin as an immune organ. West. J. Med. 1994; 160(2): 146-52.
  10. Shimada S., Katz S.I. The skin as an immunologic organ. Arch. Pathol. Lab. Med. 1988; 112(3): 231-4.
  11. Meyer T., Stockfleth E., Christophers E. Immune response profiles in human skin. Br. J. Dermatol. 2007; 157(Suppl. 2): 1-7.
  12. Streilein J.W. Lymphocyte traffic, T-cell malignancies and the skin. J. Invest. Dermatol. 1978; 71(3): 167-71.
  13. Bos J.D., Zonneveld I., Das P.K., Krieg S.R., vam der Loos C.M., Kapsenberg M.L. The skin immune system (SIS): distribution and immunophenotype of lymphocyte subpopulations in normal human skin. J. Invest. Dermatol. 1987; 88(5): 569-73.
  14. Козлова Н.Н., Прокопенко В.Д. Кожа как иммунный орган. Мезотерапия.Иммунопатология, аллергология, инфектология. 2006; 4: 34-40.
  15. Simon J.C. The skin - an immunocompetent organ. Fortshr. Med. 1994; 112(20-21): 293-5.
  16. Baker B.S. Skin immune mechanisms in health and disease. Garner Press; 2006: 309.
  17. Боровик Т.Э., Макарова С.Г., Дарчия С.Н., Гамалеева А.В., Грибакин С.Г. Кожа как орган иммунной системы. Педиатрия. 2010; 89(2): 132-6.
  18. Mizutani H., Miwa N., Mizutani T., Kupper T.S. Melanocytes produce IL-1 beta and contain an IL-1beta convertase activity - a potential in vivo mechanism for paracrine conversion of keratinocyte pro-IL-1beta (Abstr). J. Invest. Dermatol. 1990; 94(4): 556.
  19. Zachariae C.O., Thestrup-Pedersen K., Matsushima K. Expression and secretion of leukocyte chemotactic cytokines by normal human melanocytes and melanoma cells. J. Invest. Dermatol. 1991; 97(3): 593-9.
  20. Picut C., Meunier J., Lee C., Lewis R. Expression of HLA-DR and OKT6 antigens on keratinocytes and dendritic cells in pemphigus. Arch. Dermatol. Res. 1987; 279 (8): 516-20.
  21. Schmitt D. Immunite cutanee et environnement. Ann. Dermatol. Venereol. 1991; 118(12): 931-5.
  22. Константинова Н.А. Иммунные комплексы и повреждение тканей. М.: Медицина; 1986.
  23. Ройт А., Бростофф Дж., Мейл Д. Иммунология. Пер. с англ. М.: Мир; 2000.
  24. Махнева Н.В., Белецкая Л.Б. Выделительная функция кожи по отношению к иммунным комплексам. Вестник дерматологии и венерологии. 2002; 4: 4-9.
  25. Махнева Н.В., Белецкая Л.В. Иммуноморфология кожи в норме и при патологии. В кн.: Бутов Ю.С., Скрипкин Ю.К., Иванов О.Л., ред. Дерматовенерология. Национальное руководство. М.: ГЭОТАР-Медиа; 2013: 48-61.
  26. Белецкая Л.В., Данилова Т.А. Метод иммунофлюоресценции в иммунопатологии. В кн.: Левина Е.Н., ред. Иммунолюминесценция в медицине. М.: Медицина; 1977: 145-83.
  27. Разнатовский И.М., Белецкая Л.В., Петрова И.В. Общая гистопатология и иммунопатология кожи. В кн.: Скрипкин Ю.К., ред. Кожные и венерические болезни. Руководство для врачей. М.: Медицина; 1995. т.1: 71-122.
  28. Махнева Н.В., Белецкая Л.В. Экспрессия ранних компонентов комплемента в структурах эпидермиса при иммунопатологических состояниях кожи. Вестник дерматологии и венерологии. 2008; 2: 52-63.
  29. Белецкая Л.В., Махнева Н.В. Иммуноморфология болезней кожи. В кн.: Скрипкин Ю.К., Бутов Ю.С., ред. Клиническая дерматовенерология. Руководство для врачей. М.: ГЭОТАР-Медиа; 2009. т. I: 56-72.
  30. Белецкая Л.В., Дмитриев А.А., Петрова Г.Н., Бухова В.А., Мудренко И.Ю., Бектимиров Р.А. Иммунопатология кожи и гемосорбция. Вестник дерматологии и венерологии. 1985; 5: 15-8.
  31. Белецкая Л.В., Махнева Н.В. Меченые антитела в нормальной и патологической морфологии (атлас). М.: МНПИ; 2000.



Abstract - 33

PDF (Russian) - 0


Article Metrics

Metrics Loading ...



Copyright (c) 2016 Makhneva N.V.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

This website uses cookies

You consent to our cookies if you continue to use our website.

About Cookies