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December 1994

Changes in Clinical Features, Histologic Findings, and Antigen Profiles With Development of Pemphigus Foliaceus From Pemphigus Vulgaris

Author Affiliations

From the Division of Dermatology, St Luke's International Hospital, Tokyo (Dr Kawana); and the Departments of Dermatology, Kitasato University School of Medicine, Sagamihara (Drs Kawana and Nishiyama), and Keio University School of Medicine, Tokyo (Drs Hashimoto and Nishikawa), Japan.

Arch Dermatol. 1994;130(12):1534-1538. doi:10.1001/archderm.1994.01690120070010

Background and Design:  Several articles have described patients with pemphigus who showed a transition from pemphigus vulgaris (PV) to pemphigus foliaceus (PF) or vice versa. However, there have been no adequate reports in the literature on the association between transition in disease type and change in autoantibody reactivity against the pemphigus antigens. We investigated the antigen profiles of the serum samples obtained from two patients with pemphigus who were demonstrated to shift from PV to PF with evidence from clinical, histologic, and immunohistologic findings. Western blot technique was performed using normal human epidermal extracts as an antigen source.

Results:  The serum samples of both cases at the PV stage reacted with the 130-kd antigen and the serum samples at the PF stage reacted with the 150-kd antigen. Accordingly, the dermatologic, histologic, and immunohistologic findings before and after the transition from PV to PF were clearly related to changes in the serum reactivity with the pemphigus antigens.

Conclusions:  This was the first investigation completely demonstrating changes in antigen profiles at the molecular level consistent with transition from the PV to the PF form of the disease. Moreover, the findings of this study confirmed the existence of a close correlation between the 130- and the 150-kd antigens, with the onset of each form of the disease.(Arch Dermatol. 1994;130:1534-1538)

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