, Volume 29, Issue 1, pp 15-26
Date: 21 Feb 2007

Toll-like receptors in the skin

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Abstract

Toll-like receptors (TLRs) are important pattern-recognition receptors involved in host defense against a variety of pathogenic microorganisms. Activation of TLRs leads to the production of cytokines, chemokines, antimicrobial peptides, and upregulation costimulatory and adhesion molecules involved in innate and adaptive immune responses. TLRs are expressed on a variety of cell types found in the skin, including keratinocytes and Langerhans cells in the epidermis, resident and trafficking immune-system cells such as macrophages, dendritic cells, T and B cells, and mast cells in the dermis, endothelial cells of the skin microvasculature, and skin stromal cells such as fibroblasts and adipocytes. There have been an increasing number of reports demonstrating that TLRs play a key role in cutaneous host defense mechanisms against bacterial, fungal, and viral pathogens. In addition, TLRs have also been implicated in the pathophysiology of various inflammatory skin diseases.