Anais Brasileiros de Dermatologia
On-line version ISSN 1806-4841
SOUZA FILHO, Luiz Gonzaga C. et al. Comparative study of vitiligo, halo nevus, and vitiligoid variant of lupus erythematosus by immunological, histological, and immunohistochemical methods. An. Bras. Dermatol. [online]. 2005, vol.80, n.2, pp. 143-148. ISSN 1806-4841. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0365-05962005000200004.
BACKGROUND: There are no records of comparative studies on the immunological, histological and immunohistochemical aspects of vitiligo, halo nevus and vitiligoid variant of lupus erythematosus in the literature. The studies available present only descriptive clinical data on leucoderma that accompanies lupus erythematosus in its diverse clinical forms. OBJECTIVES: 1- To evaluate the immunohistochemical differences between vitiligo, halo nevus and vitiligoid variant of lupus erythematosus; 2- To verify whether the depigmentation observed in the diverse clinical forms of lupus is due to post-inflammatory destruction or to specific immunological attack on melanocytes. METHODS: 1- Detection of melanocyte antibodies: by direct and indirect immunofluorescence on nevus and melanoma cells; 2- Cytotoxicity evaluation: study of the activity of NK cells against cultivated melanoma cells; 3- Histopathological study of melanocytes and melanin: histopathology with hematoxylin-eosin, Fontana- Masson, Dopa and Dopa + silver and S-100 protein test by immunoperoxidase. RESULTS: Vitiligo and halo nevus patients presented to antimelanocyte antibodies in 25% of cases. Patients with vitiligoid variant of lupus erythematous also presented these antibodies. The presence of risk factors favoring cellular cytotoxicity was demonstrated in vitiligo and/or halo nevus, as well as in the vitiligoid variant of lupus erythematous. Staining with Dopa + silver nitrate was superior to traditional staining and to S-100 protein to detect melanocytes and/or melanin in depigmented lesions of vitiligo and/or halo nevus and vitiligoid variant of lupus erythematous. CONCLUSION: The results confirm the existence of antimelanocyte antibodies in vitiligo and halo nevus. It is not possible to rule out some immunological phenomena similar to those occurring in vitiligo and halo nevus in the genesis of vitiligoid lesions in lupus erythematous. The detection of melanocytes in achromic lesions of vitiligo suggests the predominance of a functional inhibitory mechanism rather than cell destruction in the genesis of the disease.
Keywords : Allergy and Immunology; Lupus; Nevus, Pigmented; Vitiligo.