Epithelial expression of the hormone leptin by bovine skin


Leptin (Lep) stimulates keratinocytes to proliferate, intervenes in the wound healing and participates to hair follicle morphogenesis and cycle. While it is secreted by skin structures including epidermis and hair follicles, intradermal adipose tissue also seems to have a role in Lep secretion and accordingly in the control of hair follicle growth in mice and humans. Lep was investigated in the skin of humans and laboratory animals but there are not data regarding bovine species. The aim of this work was to study the expression of Lep and its receptor (LepR) in the skin of bovine and, at the same time, to investigate the presence and extension of intradermal adipose tissue. A morphological evaluation of the skin was performed while the presence and localization of Lep and LepR were analyzed by RT-PCR and immunohistochemistry. A high and thick dermis without adipocytes was observed. Hair follicles and sebaceous and sweat glands were located in the proximal part of the skin while a thick layer of connective tissue, lacking adipose cells, separated these structures by subcutis. RT-PCR evidenced the transcripts for both molecules. By immunohistochemistry, Lep and LepR were observed in the epidermis and hair follicles. Based on the absence of intradermal adipose tissue and the presence of both Lep and LepR in the epidermis and in the hair follicle epithelium, it can be posited that in bovine skin Lep participates to the control of epidermis growth and hair follicle cycle through a paracrine and autocrine mechanisms.


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Author Biography

Cecilia Dall'Aglio, University of Perugia, Department of Veterinary Medicine

Dipartimento di Scienze Biopatologiche Veterinarie ed Igiene delle Produzioni Animali ed Alimentari, Sezione di Anatomia Veterinaria

Original Papers
Supporting Agencies
University of Perugia by the “Fondo Ricerca di Base 2014”
Hair follicle, epidermis, leptin receptor, immunohistochemistry, RT-PCR, bovine
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How to Cite
Mercati, F., Dall’Aglio, C., Timperi, L., Scocco, P., De Felice, E., & Maranesi, M. (2019). Epithelial expression of the hormone leptin by bovine skin. European Journal of Histochemistry, 63(1). https://doi.org/10.4081/ejh.2019.2993