Dermatology pp 709-750 | Cite as

Disorders of Keratinization

  • Otto Braun-Falco
  • Gerd Plewig
  • Helmut H. Wolff
  • Walter H. C. Burgdorf


The disorders of keratinization can be best understood within the framework of normal epidermal differentiation. The outermost layer of the epidermis, the stratum corneum, provides the interface between man and his external world. The epidermis is a multiple layered keratinizing squamous epithelium. Besides keratinocytes, there are three other important cell populations in the epidermis: melanocytes, Langerhans cells or epidermal antigen-processing cells and Merkel cells which appear to function as mechanoreceptors interacting with peripheral nerves. On ultrastructural examination, the melanosomes are characterized by immature melanosomes (stage I–II), the Langerhans cells by Birbeck granules, the Merkel cells by dense core granules, and the keratinocytes by tonofilaments and desmosomes.


Stratum Corneum Acanthosis Nigricans Stratum Granulosum Autosomal Dominant Pattern Oral Retinoid 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Otto Braun-Falco
    • 1
  • Gerd Plewig
    • 1
  • Helmut H. Wolff
    • 2
  • Walter H. C. Burgdorf
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Dermatology and AllergologyLudwig Maximilians UniversityMunichGermany
  2. 2.Department of Dermatology and VenerologyUniversity of LübeckLübeckGermany

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