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Clinical and Developmental Immunology
Volume 2009, Article ID 673952, 9 pages
Research Article

The Protective Effects of Ultraviolet A1 Irradiation on Spontaneous Lupus Erythematosus-Like Skin Lesions in MRL/lpr Mice

Department of Dermatology, Wakayama Medical University, 811-1 Kimiidera, Wakayama 641-0012, Japan

Received 29 December 2008; Accepted 21 February 2009

Academic Editor: Yasunobu Yoshikai

Copyright © 2009 Naoya Mikita et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


We investigated the effects of ultraviolet A1 (UVA1) irradiation on spontaneous lupus erythematosus- (LE-) like skin lesions of MRL/lpr mice, using a disease prevention model. UVA1 irradiation significantly inhibited the development of LE-like skin lesions, without obvious changes of the disease including renal disease and serum antinuclear antibody levels. Besides the massive infiltration of mast cells in the LE-like skin lesions, in the nonlesional skins, more mast cells infiltrated in the UVA1-irradiated group compared with the nonirradiated group. Although apoptotic cells were remarkably seen in the dermis of UVA1-irradiated mice, those cells were hardly detectable in the dermis of the nonirradiated mice without skin lesions. Further analysis showed that some of those apoptotic cells were mast cells. Thus, UVA1 might exert its effects, at least in part, through the induction of the apoptosis of pathogenic mast cells. Our results supported the clinical efficacy of UVA1 irradiation for skin lesions of lupus patients.