What is the role of BP antigens in the pathogenesis of bullous pemphigoid?

Updated: Oct 14, 2020
  • Author: Lawrence S Chan, MD; Chief Editor: Dirk M Elston, MD  more...
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The precise role of bullous pemphigoid antigens in the pathogenesis of bullous pemphigoid is not completely clear. BPAg1 (BP230) is an intracellular component of the hemidesmosome; BPAg2 (BP180, type XVII collagen) is a transmembranous protein with a collagenous extracellular domain. [17] Passive transfer experiments in newborn mice have demonstrated that rabbit antibodies against mouse BPAg2 can induce subepidermal blisters similar to those observed in patients with bullous pemphigoid. However, the eosinophil infiltration that is frequently observed in human bullous pemphigoid lesional skin was not detected in the passive transfer experimental model. [18] Furthermore, anti-BP180 NC16A domain autoantibodies purified from patients with bullous pemphigoid are capable of inducing dermal-epidermal separation in cryosections of normal human skin. [19]

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