Expression of serotonergic receptors in psoriatic skin

Klas Nordlind, Kristoffer Thorslund, Solbritt Lonne-Rahm, Sheila Mohabbati, Timea Berki, Marisela Morales, Efrain C. Azmitia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Psoriasis appears to be influenced by stress, which causes release of adrenal hormones. Serotonin, or hormonal actions on serotonin and serotonin receptors, may have a role in psoriasis. Distribution of serotonin receptors was studied in involved and noninvolved skin in patients with psoriasis and compared to normal skin, by using immunohistochemistry and antibodies to 5-HT1A, 5-HT2A and 5-HT3 receptors (R). There was a decreased (P<0.001) number of 5-HT1AR positive cells, the majority being tryptase positive, in involved and noninvolved psoriatic papillary dermis, compared to normal skin. 5-HTlAR expression was also found in the upper part of the epidermis, on vessel walls and on melanocytes. 5-HT2AR expressing papillary mononuclear cells, CD3 positive, were increased (P<0.001 and P<0.01, respectively) in involved and noninvolved psoriatic skin, compared to normal skin, an increase (P<0.01) also being found in the involved compared to noninvolved skin. Expression of 5-HT3R could be found in the basal epidermal layer of noninvolved but not in the involved skin of psoriasis, where it was only found in the acrosyringium. The present findings are compatible with the 5-HT1A and 5-HT2A receptors having antagonistic functions, and raise the possibility of using receptor specific drugs in the treatment of psoriasis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)99-106
Number of pages8
JournalArchives of Dermatological Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - Aug 2006


  • Psoriasis
  • Receptors
  • Serotonin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology


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