A transcriptomic analysis study of patch test-induced allergic contact dermatitis to methylisothiazolinone, diazolidinyl urea, isoeugenol, nickel and 2-hydroxyethylmethacrylate

Grantee: Ana Giménez-Arnau, Dermatologist, Hospital del Mar

Amount: DKK 490,000

Grant category: Research Grants in open competition

Year: 2023

Geography: Spain

Allergic contact dermatitis (ACD) is a frequent skin condition associated with significant loss of quality of life. Finding specific biomarkers has emerged as a relevant challenge to improve the diagnosis of patients and unravel therapeutic alternatives.

Recent findings have highlighted the existence of allergen-specific transcriptomic fingerprinting (i.e., genetic patterns that enable unambiguous identification of entities – here allergens). However, to date only a few studies have been performed comparing a wide range of different allergens.

In the proposed project, Ana Giménez-Arnau, along with colleague David Pesqué, plans to make a gene expression analysis of biopsies from patch-induced ACD by methylisothiazolinone, diazolidinyl urea, nickel, isoeugenol and 2-hydroxi-ethylemetacrylate. Specifically, Ana Giménez-Arnau and her team will evaluate the presence of allergen-specific genetic fingerprinting, if common biomarkers between allergens can be identified, if there are transcriptomic changes depending on the biopsy timing and finally, they will correlate the results with the characteristics and intensity of inflammatory infiltrates and the level allergic reaction of the patch-induced ACD.

This prospective investigation will be based on recruitment of patients with ACD to the indicated allergens and includes two single patch tests containing the standard commercialized allergen and one single patch test with petrolatum (positive control) to be applied on day 1. Two biopsies will be taken on day 3 (one from the petrolatum patch and one from the first allergen patch). The final biopsy will be taken on day 5 from the remaining allergen patch.

Collectively, the project will provide insights to the genetic characteristics of allergic contact dermatitis and may provide a foundation for identifying common or allergen-specific treatment targets.