Phenotypical Conversions of Dermal Adipocytes as Pathophysiological Steps in Inflammatory Cutaneous Disorders

Ilja L. Kruglikov, Zhuzhen Zhang, Philipp E. Scherer

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Adipocytes from the superficial layer of subcutaneous adipose tissue undergo cyclic deand re-differentiation, which can significantly influence the development of skin inflammation under different cutaneous conditions. This inflammation can be connected with local loading of the reticular dermis with lipids released due to de-differentiation of adipocytes during the catagen phase of the hair follicle cycle. Alternatively, the inflammation parallels a widespread release of cathelicidin, which typically takes place in the anagen phase (especially in the presence of pathogens). Additionally, trans-differentiation of dermal adipocytes into myofibroblasts, which can occur under some pathological conditions, can be responsible for the development of collateral scarring in acne. Here, we provide an overview of such cellular conversions in the skin and discuss their possible involvement in the pathophysiology of inflammatory skin conditions, such as acne and psoriasis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number3828
JournalInternational journal of molecular sciences
Issue number7
StatePublished - Apr 1 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • acne
  • de-differentiation
  • dermal adipocytes
  • psoriasis
  • re-differentiation
  • trans-differentiation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Molecular Biology
  • Spectroscopy
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry


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