Atopic dermatitis

Atopic dermatitis


  • Elena Galli UOS Immuno Allergologia dell’Età evolutiva, Ospedale San Pietro-Fatebenefratelli, Roma, Italy
  • Bianca Cinicola Department of Pediatrics, Sapienza University, Rome, Italy
  • Rossella Carello UOS Immuno Allergologia dell’Età evolutiva, Ospedale San Pietro-Fatebenefratelli, Roma, Italy
  • Silvia Caimmi Pediatric Clinic, Foundation IRCCS Policlinico San Matteo, University of Pavia, Pavia, Italy.
  • Giulia Brindisi Department of Pediatrics, Sapienza University, Rome, Italy
  • Giovanna De Castro Department of Pediatrics, Sapienza University, Rome, Italy
  • Anna Maria Zicari Department of Pediatrics, Sapienza University, Rome, Italy
  • Maria Angela Tosca Allergy Center, Department of Pediatrics, Istituto G. Gaslini, Genoa, Italy
  • Sara Manti UOC Broncopneumologia Pediatrica e Fibrosi Cistica, AOUP “Vittorio-Emanuele”, San Marco Hospital, Università di Catania, Catania, Italy
  • Alberto Martelli Department of Pediatrics, G.Salvini Hospital, Garbagnate Milanese, Milan, Italy
  • Mauro Calvani UOC di Pediatria. Azienda Ospedaliera S. Camillo Forlanini, Roma, Italy
  • Claudio Cravidi Agenzia Tutela della Salute, ATS (National Healthcare System), Pavia, Italy
  • Gian Luigi Marseglia Pediatric Clinic Department of Pediatrics, Fondazione IRCCS Policlinico S. Matteo, University of Pavia, Pavia, Italy
  • Fabio Cardinale Department of Pediatrics and Emergency, Pediatric Allergy and Pulmunology Unit, Azienda Ospedaliera-Universitaria Consorziale-Policlinico, Ospedale Pediatrico Giovanni XXIII, Bari, Italy.
  • Michele Miraglia Del Giudice Department of Woman, Child and of General and Specialized Surgery. University of Campania"Luigi Vanvitelli" Naples, Italy
  • Carlo Caffarelli Clinica Pediatrica, Dipartimento di Medicina e Chirurgia, Università di Parma, Italy
  • Marzia Duse Department of Pediatrics, Sapienza University, Rome, Italy


atopic dermatitis, prevalence, pathogenesis, economical-social burden, diagnosis, treatment


Atopic dermatitis (AD) is a common inflammatory skin disease, clinically characterized by recurrent eczematous lesions and intense itching, leading to excoriations and susceptibility to cutaneous infections. Although it is considered a pediatric disorder, mainly starting in infancy, it is also very common in adults. Etiology of AD is complex and multifactorial: interaction between genetic susceptibility and environment, but also cutaneous barrier impairment, change in microbiome composition and innate and adaptive immune dysregulation are the main factors involved in the pathogenesis of the disease. Originally, the disorder was considered mediated by an imbalance towards a T-helper 2 response and excessive IgE production to allergens, but now it is recognized as a lifelong disposition with variable clinical expressivity, where dysfunctions of the epidermal barrier, immune system and microbiome play a central role. AD leads to a substantial psycho-social burden on patients and their relatives and increases the risk of other allergic and non allergic disorders. The real economic impact of AD is difficult to measure due to the broad spectrum of disease severity and the multiple direct and indirect costs, but the overall medical expenses seem to be very high and similar to those of other diseases such as diabetes. Currently, a multiple therapeutic approach is aimed only at improving the skin state, reducing itching and keeping a stable condition. New safety and curative treatments may be developed only after enhancing our understanding on the pathogenesis of AD and the heterogeneity of its clinical manifestations.


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How to Cite

Galli E, Cinicola B, Carello R, Caimmi S, Brindisi G, De Castro G, et al. Atopic dermatitis . Acta Biomed [Internet]. 2020 Sep. 15 [cited 2024 Jul. 23];91(11-S):e2020011. Available from: