Research ArticleMicrobiome

Staphylococcus aureus and Staphylococcus epidermidis strain diversity underlying pediatric atopic dermatitis

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Science Translational Medicine  05 Jul 2017:
Vol. 9, Issue 397, eaal4651
DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.aal4651

Diving into the depths of atopic dermatitis

The genus Staphylococcus is a known component of atopic dermatitis. In this issue, Byrd et al. used shotgun metagenomic sequencing to analyze the species and strains present at baseline and during flares in pediatric atopic dermatitis. They observed that patients with more mild disease had more Staphylococcus epidermidis detected in flares and that those with severe disease were colonized by dominant clonal Staphylococcus aureus strains. S. aureus strains from patients were applied to mouse skin, and strains from severe flares induced T cell expansion and epidermal thickening. These results highlight that not all Staphylococcus can be considered the same, even at the strain level, when it comes to atopic dermatitis pathogenesis.

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