Pruritic Activity and Neurogenic Inflammation with S. aureus δ-toxin in Atopic Dermatitis
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This study investigates how toxins secreted from Staphylococcus aureus, such as δ-toxin, can produce pruritis and initiate neurogenic inflammation to help characterize the cutaneous neural reaction to S. aureus colonization in atopic dermatitis. Determining this process could identify targets to help mitigate itch and neurogenic inflammation and its averse immune effects in atopic dermatitis patients. The pruritic activity of δ-toxin was confirmed using behavior tests with mice, since δ-toxin treatment elicits significantly more scratching bouts than the control. ELISA kits were used to determine the extracellular concentrations of CGRP and Substance P after treatment with δ-toxin, PSMα3, PSMα2, and α-toxin of cultured DRG cells. This showed that all toxins triggered significant release of both peptides, indicating that they are sufficient to activate DRG neurons and initiate neurogenic inflammation. The behavior test show that δ-toxin can activate pruriceptors however since the whole DRG were cultured, the results of the ELISA tests are not necessarily directly from the itch receptors.