Atopic dermatitis (AD) has a multifactorial pathogenesis. The main pathological changes are skin barrier dysfunction and an altered immunological response. A third well known phenomenon in AD is dysbiosis in the skin microbiome. The prevalence of AD is still rising and the disease has a significant negative impact on the quality of life of both children and their families. The exact composition and role of the microbiome in the complex pathogenesis of AD are not clear. The overall objective is to identify skin micro-organisms (or changes in microbial composition) that are associated with atopic dermatitis and its severity. Second, we want to find mechanisms through which these micro-organisms can cause inflammation.
We hope to detect micro-organisms associated with AD so we can identify patients that could benefit from therapy targeting the microbiome. Through this research we hope to develop personalized treatment strategies that target the microbiome in atopic dermatitis.