ROBERT R. RICH, M.D.; CHARLES H. KIRKPATRICK, M.D.; ALAN S. ROSENTHAL, M.D.
A case of photosensitive cheilitis, a disease predominantly found in Africans, is described in a negro American. It is characterized by painful, chronic ulceration of the lower lip, induced by solar radiation. Studies to elucidate the pathogenesis of the disease showed that the mechanisms of repair of ultraviolet-damaged DNA were normal, thus excluding a defect analogous to that in xeroderma pigmentosum. However, the basal turnover of thymidine in lymphocytes not irradiated with ultraviolet light was excessive. Furthermore, ultrastructural studies of damaged lip tissues showed nuclear bodies and microtubular cytoplasmic aggregates in endothelial cells. Because similar findings have been seen in virus-infected tissues, activation of latent virus infection is suggested as an etiologic mechanism in photosensitive cheilitis.
RICH RR, KIRKPATRICK CH, ROSENTHAL AS. Photosensitive Cheilitis: Clinical and Pathogenetic Considerations. Ann Intern Med. ;75:909–917. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-75-6-909
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1971;75(6):909-917.
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