Cigarette smoke (CS) alters cutaneous biological processes such as redox homeostasis and inflammation response that might be involved in promoting skin inflammatory conditions. Exposure to CS has also been linked to a destabilization of the NLRP3 inflammasome in pollution target tissues such as the lung epithelium, resulting in a more vulnerable immunological response to several exogenous and endogenous stimuli related to oxidative stress. Thus, CS has an adverse effect on host defense, increasing the susceptibility to develop lung infections and pathologies. In the skin, another direct target of pollution, inflammasome disorders have been linked to an increasing number of diseases such as melanoma, psoriasis, vitiligo, atopic dermatitis, and acne, all conditions that have been connected directly or indirectly to pollution exposure. The inflammasome machinery is an important innate immune sensor in human keratinocytes. However, the role of CS in the NLRP1 and NLRP3 inflammasome in the cutaneous barrier has still not been investigated. In the present study, we were able to determine in keratinocytes exposed to CS an increased oxidative damage evaluated by 4-HNE protein adduct and carbonyl formation. Of note is that, while CS inhibited NLRP3 activation, it was able to activate NLRP1, leading to an increased secretion of the proinflammatory cytokines IL-1 beta and IL-18. This study highlights the importance of the inflammasome machinery in CS that more in general, in pollution, affects cutaneous tissues and the important cross-talk between different members of the NLRP inflammasome family.
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