Clearing of psoriasis documented by laser Doppler perfusion imaging contrasts remaining elevation of dermal expression levels of CD31

A.G.M. Hendriks, P.C.M. van de Kerkhof, C.S. de Jonge, M. Lucas, W. Steenbergen, M.M.B. Seyger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Vascular modifications represent a key feature in psoriatic plaques. Previous research with Laser Doppler Perfusion Imaging (LDPI) revealed a remarkable heterogeneity in the cutaneous perfusion within homogenous-appearing psoriatic lesions. Insights in the relation between perfusion during treatment and related biological changes are lacking.

Objectives: To study the effect of calcipotriol-betamethasone dipropionate ointment on the microcirculation and the expression levels of immunohistochemical markers in psoriatic lesions compared to the distant uninvolved skin.

Methods: Psoriatic lesions of fourteen patients were treated once a day during 8 weeks. Clinical SUM scores and the perfusion intensity by means of LDPI were assessed every 2 weeks. After 8 weeks, a biopsy from the target lesion and one from the distant uninvolved skin were taken and stained for psoriasis-related markers, like IL-17 and CD31.

Results: After 8 weeks, seven patients reached a SUM score of 0 or 1, and were classified as good-responders. The other patients were classified moderate-responders. The perfusion intensity decreased in all lesions during therapy. In the good-responders, all investigated psoriasis-related proteins within the treated lesions reached the expression level found within the distant uninvolved skin. The expression of CD31, however, was significantly higher in the treated lesions as compared to the distant uninvolved skin (p = 0.0156). In the moderate responders, almost all expression levels remained significantly elevated compared to the uninvolved skin.

Conclusions: In the skin of good-responders the expression of dermal CD31+ endothelium remains significantly elevated within the treated lesions compared with the distant uninvolved skin, whereas a marked reduction in the perfusion intensity and SUM score was found. This indicates that clinical improvement might outrun endothelial changes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)340-345
Number of pages6
JournalSkin research and technology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • Laser Doppler perfusion imaging (LDPI)
  • Plaque heterogeneity
  • TOPCam
  • Psoriasis
  • Microcirculation
  • Calcipotriol
  • Betamethasone dipropionate ointment


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