Cytokeratins in the canine epidermis
The purpose of this study was to characterize the cytokeratins (CKs) present in the clinically normal skin of dogs. Skin samples from five German shepherds, five Boxers, five Cocker spaniels, five Yorkshire terriers and five mongrels were examined biochemically (using gel electrophoresis and western blotting) and immunohistochemically (using a alkaline phosphatase anti-alkaline phosphatase technique). Results indicated that the canine epidermis expressed the cytokeratins 1, 5, 6, 10/11, 14 and 16. There were no consistent differences in CK expression between the examined breeds with the exception of an individual polymorphism in CK1 and CK10/11. Immunohistochemical studies showed CK 14 labelling of the basal cell layer whereas CK10/11 staining was seen in the suprabasal cell layer of epidermis. Surprisingly, expression of CK6, known as ‘stress’ cytokeratin, was demonstrated in all epidermal samples. These results indicate that there is a striking consistency of cytokeratin expression in different breeds which should be useful in the investigation and characterization of canine skin diseases.
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