Background Serum arginase levels have been shown to be elevated in conditions, such as trauma, cancer, chronic wounds, pregnancy, and diabetes. This also has been found to be true in atopic diseases, such as asthma and allergic rhinitis. Objective To study arginase activity in patients with atopic dermatitis (AD). Methods In this pilot study, arginase activity levels in 15 pediatric patients with AD were compared with those in controls to determine whether arginase levels in AD are altered as in patients with other atopic diseases. Results In contrast to the other diseases studied, arginase activity was found to be decreased in granulocytes and in the plasma of patients with AD compared with controls. This finding was coupled with a trend toward higher L-arginine plasma levels. Conclusion In AD, a different mechanism of arginine metabolism seems to be stimulated, leading to the formation of nitric oxide pathway components causing suppression of the arginase pathway and impairment in skin hydration, collagen synthesis, and wound healing.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine