Remember meForgot password?
    Log in with Twitter

Atopic dermatitis linked to changes to microorganisms

By Tim Sandle     Apr 28, 2016 in Health
Atopic dermatitis is a common condition. However, the causes are not fully understood. A new study suggests there are variations with the condition and the collection of microorganisms found in association with the skin.
Atopic dermatitis is a chronic inflammatory skin condition (a form of eczema) It affects millions of people worldwide, as well as several animals, such as dogs. In terms of current trends, the number of cases with people is increasing and incidences of the condition stand higher than they did 50 years ago. With the condition, the protective barrier of the skin is weakened, leaving the body more prone to infection.
In terms of the different forms of the skin condition, there are greater parallels between the disease with people and dogs than there is between people and other animals, such as mice. The similarity is that the skin condition is associated with particular Staphylococcus bacteria. With people this is the bacterium S. aureus; whereas with dogs the condition arises in association with the organism S. pseudintermedius.
The association between atopic dermatitis and blooms of certain bacteria indicates there is a strong likelihood that alternations to the microorganisms found on the skin and the extent and severity of the disease.
It would seem that with both dogs and people, when the condition flares up there is an overall decrease in the standard bacterial flora and a sharp rise in certain species of Staphylococcus bacteria. The ratio of the Staphylococci increased almost ten-fold relative to the normal skin bacterial flora.
Trials appear to affirm the bacterial link, for when both people and dogs are administered with appropriate antibiotics, the skin heals relative to the problematic bacteria being killed off.
Comparing humans and dogs is part of a new approach in medicine called the ‘One Health’ approach to research. Here it is recognized that the same disease processes often occur in animals and in humans.
The study has been carried out by the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and Penn's School of Veterinary Medicine. The findings are published in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology, in a paper titled “Longitudinal Evaluation of the Skin Microbiome and Association with Microenvironment and Treatment in Canine Atopic Dermatitis.”
More about dermatitis, atopic dermatitis, Microorganisms, Skin
More news from