Acta Vet. Brno 2011, 80: 11-17

Cells of the skin immune system in dogs with atopy

Joanna M. Czogala1,2, Krzysztof Marycz1, Jan J. Kuryszko3, Marcin Zawadzki4

1Electron Microscopy Laboratory, Department of Animal Hygiene and Ichthyology, Faculty of Biology and Animal Science, Wroclaw University of Environmental and Life Sciences, Wroclaw, Poland
2Veterinary Clinic ‘Brynow’, Katowice, Poland
3Department of Animal Anatomy and Histology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Wroclaw University of Environmental and Life Sciences, Wroclaw, Poland
4Department of Animal Physiology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Environmental and Life Sciences, Wrocław, Poland

Twenty-five dogs with signs of atopic dermatitis were included in this study. Additionally, 10 healthy dogs were chosen as healthy skin controls. Skin biopsy specimens were taken from these dogs and evaluated for the following cells: basal cell layer including the number of mitotic figures in this layer, spinous cell layer, macrophages, melanocytes, mast cells and dendritic cells. Identification of mast cells and dendritic cells was performed by means of immunohistochemistry. Histological and statistical investigations showed that the number of mitotic figures in the basal cell layer as well as the number of mast cells, melanocytes, dendritic cells and macrophages was significantly higher in the skin of dogs with atopic dermatitis compared to the healthy dogs (p < 0.01). This finding indicates multilateral quantitative activation within the cellular elements of the skin immune system. Furthermore, marked morphological heterogeneity and distinct degranulation patterns observed among mast cells in atopic skin points to their significant functional activation and confirms that canine atopic dermatitis is still notably a mast cell-dependent disease.


31 live references