Temporal changes in sebum excretion and propionibacterial colonization in preadolescent children with and without acne.

The Skin Research Centre, Research Institute of Molecular and Cellular Biology, The University of Leeds, Leeds LS2 9JT, U.K.
British Journal of Dermatology (Impact Factor: 3.76). 02/2007; 156(1):22-31. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2133.2006.07517.x
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT It is generally accepted that the onset of sebum secretion occurs before puberty in boys and girls as a result of increasing androgen output during the adrenarche. Propionibacteria are part of the commensal skin flora and, in adults, are found in highest numbers in sebum-rich areas of skin such as the face and upper trunk. Previous studies investigating the association between sebum output and propionibacterial population densities have been cross-sectional and have been carried out mainly in adults.
The purpose of this study was to examine the association between the onset of sebum secretion and expansion of the propionibacterial flora in a population of early adolescent children aged between 5.5 and 12 years, and to evaluate the temporal relation between the two factors longitudinally. In addition, the study aimed to evaluate the change with age in sebaceous gland activity and propionibacterial colonization on the skin and in the nares between children who developed acne and those who did not.
Biannual examinations of volunteers included age, pubertal (Tanner) stage, weight and height, lesion counting on the face, propionibacterial colonization on the skin surface and in the nares and sebum secretion. A longitudinal analysis based on all observations of each subject throughout the study was applied to examine the change of sebaceous gland activity and propionibacterial colonization with age and pubertal stage. A generalized estimating equation was used with a 0.05 level of significance.
The commencement of sebum production was asynchronous, with only a small number of follicles initially starting to secrete sebum onto the skin surface. The number of secreting follicles and the area of sebum increased with age and pubertal stage (P < 0.0001, P < 0.05, respectively). Numbers of propionibacteria on the skin tended to increase after the age of 9 years, but not significantly so. In contrast, numbers of propionibacteria in the nares increased significantly with age (P < 0.0001) but not with pubertal maturation. Children who developed acne had higher sebum output and propionibacterial densities with increasing age than children who did not develop acne. This effect was significant for the increase of total sebum area with age in pubertal children (P = 0.0023), the increase in number of secreting follicles with age (P = 0.020) in prepubertal children, and the increase in propionibacteria densities in the nares with age (P = 0.0005) in pubertal children. Sebaceous gland activity and propionibacterial numbers on the skin surface remained unchanged with increasing age in children who did not develop acne. Propionibacterial population densities in the nares increased with age regardless of the development of acne.
Onset of sebum secretion and consequently expansion of the propionibacterial skin flora occur earlier in children who develop acne than in children of the same age and pubertal status who do not develop acne. These observations suggest that postponing the onset of sebum production or the expansion of the propionibacterial skin flora until after puberty may represent ways of preventing the disease or minimizing its severity. Determinants of propionibacterial colonization on the skin and in the nares may be different.

  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: A designed peptide named LZ1 with 15 amino acid residues containing strong antimicrobial activity against bacteria pathogens of acne vulgaris including Propionibacterium acnes, Staphylococcus epidermidis and S. aureus. Especially, it exerted strong anti-P. acnes ability. The minimal inhibitory concentration against three strains of P. acnes was only 0.6 µg/ml, which is 4 times lower than that of clindamycin. In experimental mice skin colonization model, LZ1 significantly reduced the number of P. acnes colonized on the ear, P. acnes-induced ear swelling, and inflammatory cell infiltration. It ameliorated inflammation induced by P. acnes by inhibiting the secretion of inflammatory factors including tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) and interleukin (IL)-1β. LZ1 showed little cytotoxicity on human keratinocyte and hemolytic activity on human blood red cells. Furthermore, LZ1 was very stable in human plasma. Combined with its potential bactericidal and anti-inflammatory properties, simple structure and high stability, LZ1 might be an ideal candidate for the treatment of acne.
    PLoS ONE 01/2013; 8(8):e72923. · 3.53 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: This study was conducted to compare lipid components of sebum from persons from three ethnic backgrounds-Caucasian, African American and Northern Asian. Men and women with no acne in two age groups (18‒25 y and 35‒45 y) were recruited. Skin surface hydration (SkiCon 200EX and NovaMeter), barrier function (Delfin VapoMeter), high-resolution clinical imaging, self-assessments and two pairs of sebutapes on the forehead that extracted the lipids on the surface of their skin were used. Significant differences (p < 0.05) in skin hydration between African Americans and Caucasians in both age groups were noted, with the order from highest to lowest absolute values: African American > Northern Asian > Caucasian. Transepidermal water loss (TEWL) measurements demonstrated that African Americans and Caucasians were significantly different (p < 0.05), with the trend being the inverse of the hydration trend-Caucasian > Northern Asian > African American, which would indicate better barrier function for African Americans with a lower TEWL. African American women had more total lipid production than Northern Asian or Caucasian women. When analyzing the three lipid classes (free fatty acids, triglycerides and wax esters), the trend became significant (p < 0.05) in the wax ester fraction when directly comparing African Americans with Caucasians. Additionally, six lipids were identified in the wax ester fractions that were significantly different in quantity (p < 0.05) between African Americans and Caucasians. These results identified significant differences in sebaceous lipid profiles across ethnic groups and determined that the differences correlated with skin barrier function.
    Dermato-endocrinology. 04/2013; 5(2):319-24.
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The anterior nares are an important reservoir for opportunistic pathogens and commensal microorganisms. A barcoded Illumina paired-end sequencing method targeting the 16S rRNA V1-2 hypervariable region was developed to compare the bacterial diversity of the anterior nares across distinct human populations (volunteers from Germany vs a Babongo Pygmy tribe, Africa). Of the 251 phylotypes detected, 231 could be classified to the genus level and 109 to the species level, including the unambiguous identification of the ubiquitous Staphylococcus aureus and Moraxella catarrhalis. The global bacterial community of both adult populations revealed that they shared 85% of the phylotypes, suggesting that our global bacterial communities have likely been with us for thousands of years. Of the 34 phylotypes unique to the non-westernized population, most were related to members within the suborder Micrococcineae. There was an even more overwelming distinction between children and adults of the same population, suggesting a progression of a childhood community of high diversity comprising species of Moraxellaceae and Streptococcaceae to an adult community of lower diversity comprising species of Propionibacteriaceae, Clostridiales Incertae Sedis XI, Corynebacteriaceae and Staphylococcaceae. Thus, age was a stronger factor for accounting for differing bacterial assemblages than the origin of the human population sampled.
    Environmental Microbiology 12/2013; · 6.24 Impact Factor