The Skin – the body’s largest organ and defence system

The Skin – the body's largest organ and defence system. LEO Foundation Skin Immunology Research Center (SIC)

Our skin is a vital organ with many functions. Perhaps most importantly, it protects us against viruses and bacteria. But what happens when functions go wrong, and we get eczema, allergies and psoriasis? Today, scientists are still looking for answers on how to effectively treat many of the about 3,000 different skin diseases. Globally, an estimate of 900 million people suffer from a skin disease.

The skin is the body’s largest organ. It acts as a protective barrier and protects us against everything from infections to the sun and the cold. It helps us retain heat and keep cool, and it is able to heal itself. Not least is the skin an important part of our identity and the image we present to the outside world.

“Over the years, skin diseases as a research area has not been prioritized highly. Diseases of the skin can be incredibly disabling and stigmatising. It is therefore very important to conduct research and reach a better understanding of the diseases so that we can find effective treatments. Understanding how the immune system and the skin work together is crucial in this respect,” says Professor Charlotte Menné Bonefeld, Acting Executive Director of SIC.

The LEO Foundation Skin Immunology Research Center (SIC) at the University of Copenhagen is one of the places where this is being researched. Here, the researchers have particular focus on the immune system, as it plays a major role in about half of all existing skin diseases.

To get a deeper understanding of your body’s largest organ, please read the whole article about the skin from the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences at the University of Copenhagen by clicking here