New Study Discovers How to Disrupt the Itch Pathway of Eczema

A new discovery from North Carolina State University reveals the truth about the troublesome itch associated with atopic dermatitis, and insight into how to break the connection. These findings have the potential to dramatically change eczema treatment and it is very exciting.

Any eczema sufferer knows how painful and persistent the itch of eczema can be. And that sometimes topical creams, bathing, or rinses just don’t do the trick. Research is ongoing at the university, which just recently discovered the first junction in the itch pathway of eczema. Once the connection can be broken, the itch has a much more difficult time finding its way to the skin's surface.   

A common protein, Periostin, directly activates the neurons responsible for the itch. Periostin is located in the skin and is responsible for sending the allergic responses to the skin’s surface. By identifying the receptor, they can essentially “turn off” the Periostin signals.   

"Periostin and its receptor connect the skin directly to the central nervous system," says Santosh Mishra, assistant professor of neuroscience at NC State "We have identified the first junction in the itch pathway associated with eczema. If we can break that connection, we can relieve the itch." 

By using mice chemically-induced with atopic dermatitis researchers were able to test common allergens such as dust mites and recorded the reaction. Without using the receptor then dust resulted in an allergic reaction. They tried again but this time recepting Periostin, which yielded a significantly reduced itch reaction. 

Research has not yet been conducted on human subjects and is still in the beginning phases but this is the first time the receptor has been identified and used to reduce, or even eliminate, the eczema symptom. The future is bright for eczema and itch sufferers. 

Please remember information on our blog is not designed or meant to replace a physician’s advice. Always consult your doctor about your medical conditions. Eczema Relief Store does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Adult eczemaAllergist for eczemaAtopic dermatitisBiologic medicine for eczemaBiologics for eczemaEczemaEczema and allergiesEczema causeEczema reliefEczema researchNew eczema researchPertosinResearch for eczemaTrack eczemaTreat eczema