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October 1973

Reduced Amounts of Pyroglutamic Acid in Scales From Psoriatic Plaques

Author Affiliations

Oslo, Norway

Arch Dermatol. 1973;108(4):578-579. doi:10.1001/archderm.1973.01620250058022

To the Editor.—  Information regarding the metabolic handling of pyroglutamic acid (2-pyrrolidone-5-carboxylic acid) by the mammalian organism is scarce, and the physiological role of this substance is largely unknown. It constitutes the N-terminal residue of several biologically important peptides and proteins,1 and small amounts of the D-isomer have been found in normal urine from humans.2 The questions concerning the biological role of pyroglutamic acid have recently attracted new attention. This is largely due to its suggested participation in the transport of amino acids across membranes ("γ-glutamyl cyclus"),3 and to the recent discovery of a new inborn error of metabolism, characterized by the excretion of large amounts of pyroglutamic acid in the urine.4,5A relatively high concentration of pyroglutamic acid in human epidermis was demonstrated by Pascher6 in 1956 and later confirmed by Laden and Spitzer,7 however, the lack of specificity of the methods

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