The immunocytochemical distribution of thrombomodulin (TM) was examined in sections of skin from patients with blistering dermatoses occurring in the presence and absence of acantholysis. Skin sections were stained using polyclonal and monoclonal anti-human TM antibodies and were correlated with the staining pattern that resulted when using the monoclonal antibody 32-2B, which recognises the chief desmosomal adhesion molecule desmoglein I (DG I). Our study demonstrates a loss of TM staining in acantholytic dermatoses, occurring only in the region of actual disruption of the intercellular bridging between keratinocytes in the stratum spinosum. The thrombomodulin antigen expression paralleled the DG I expression. The strong correlation between the DG I and TM immunostaining pattern in both normal skin and acantholytic dermatoses supports the concept that TM has a role in mediating adhesion processes between keratinocytes.
- Blistering dermatoses
- Intercellular bridges