PloS one

Activation of Blood Coagulation in Two Prototypic Autoimmune Skin Diseases: A Possible Link with Thrombotic Risk.

PMID 26057532


Coagulation activation has been demonstrated in two prototypic autoimmune skin diseases, chronic autoimmune urticaria and bullous pemphigoid, but only the latter is associated with increased thrombotic risk. Two markers of coagulation activation (prothrombin fragment F1+2 and fibrin fragment D-dimer) were measured by immunoenzymatic methods in plasma samples from 30 patients with active chronic autoimmune urticaria, positive for autologous serum skin test, 30 patients with active bullous pemphigoid and 30 healthy subjects. In skin biopsies, tissue factor expression was evaluated by both immunohistochemistry and in situ hybridization. F1+2 and D-dimer levels were higher in active chronic autoimmune urticaria (276.5±89.8 pmol/L and 5.56±4.40 nmol/L, respectively) than in controls (145.2±38.0 pmol/L and 1.06±0.25 nmol/L; P=0.029 and P=0.011) and were much higher in active bullous pemphigoid (691.7±318.7 pmol/L and 15.24±9.09 nmol/L, respectively) (P<0.0001). Tissue factor positivity was evident in skin biopsies of both disorders with higher intensity in bullous pemphigoid. F1+2 and D-dimer, during remission, were markedly reduced in both disorders. These findings support the involvement of coagulation activation in the pathophysiology of both diseases. The strong systemic activation of coagulation in bullous pemphigoid may contribute to increase the thrombotic risk and provides the rationale for clinical trials on anticoagulant treatments in this disease.