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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Formation of a normal epidermis supported by increased stability of keratins 5 and 14 in keratin 10 null mice.

The expression of distinct keratin pairs during epidermal differentiation is assumed to fulfill specific and essential cytoskeletal functions. This is supported by a great variety of genodermatoses exhibiting tissue fragility because of keratin mutations. Here, we show that the loss of K10, the most prominent epidermal protein, allowed the formation of a normal epidermis in neonatal mice without signs of fragility or wound-healing response. However, there were profound changes in the composition of suprabasal keratin filaments. K5/14 persisted suprabasally at elevated protein levels, whereas their mRNAs remained restricted to the basal keratinocytes. This indicated a novel mechanism regulating keratin turnover. Moreover, the amount of K1 was reduced. In the absence of its natural partner we observed the formation of a minor amount of novel K1/14/15 filaments as revealed by immunogold electron microscopy. We suggest that these changes maintained epidermal integrity. Furthermore, suprabasal keratinocytes contained larger keratohyalin granules similar to our previous K10T mice. A comparison of profilaggrin processing in K10T and K10(-/-) mice revealed an accumulation of filaggrin precursors in the former but not in the latter, suggesting a requirement of intact keratin filaments for the processing. The mild phenotype of K10(-/-) mice suggests that there is a considerable redundancy in the keratin gene family.[1]


  1. Formation of a normal epidermis supported by increased stability of keratins 5 and 14 in keratin 10 null mice. Reichelt, J., Büssow, H., Grund, C., Magin, T.M. Mol. Biol. Cell (2001) [Pubmed]
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