In this issue of JAMA Dermatology, Speeckaert and colleagues1 report that levels of the soluble CD25 and CD27 molecules (sCD25 and sCD27) are elevated in the serum of patients with active vitiligo compared with patients with stable disease. In addition, sCD25 levels were found to be significantly lower in the serum of patients being treated with topical immunosuppressants (including steroids and calcineurin inhibitors) and the serum level of sCD27 was significantly lower in patients with recent repigmentation, suggesting a potential to use these as biomarkers to monitor treatment responses. Interestingly, the authors continued to prospectively study a relatively large number of participants and demonstrated that serum levels of both sCD25 and sCD27 were associated with disease progression during follow-up. These important findings suggest that monitoring of these markers in the serum of patients with vitiligo may provide a glimpse into what is happening in the skin, a process that is not obvious by simple observation in vitiligo, in contrast to more inflammatory diseases.
Rashighi M, Harris JE. Sampling Serum in Patients With Vitiligo to Measure Disease Activity in the Skin. JAMA Dermatol. 2016;152(11):1187–1188. doi:10.1001/jamadermatol.2016.2501