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Case report: Successful treatment of acute generalized pustular psoriasis with multiple comorbidities with oral tacrolimus

Mingdan Zhao, Fujun Huang, Lei Tang, Xun Zhou,Miao Zhang, Mengxue Liao,Lirong Liu,Mengya Huang, Front. Immunol. 2024, 15,

Acute generalized pustular psoriasis (GPP) is a serious illness. Despite various treatment methods, there is still lack of effective treatment plans for refractory cases with multiple comorbidities. This case report presents a 67-year-old woman with acute GPP, stage 4 chronic kidney disease (CKD), type 2 diabetes, and cardiovascular disease, in whom skin symptom disappearance and kidney function improvement were observed after the use of oral tacrolimus as the sole therapy. This is the first report on the application of tacrolimus in the treatment of acute GPP, especially refractory acute GPP. The successful treatment indicates that there are shared immune pathways between acute GPP and CKD, and the pathways can be interdicted by tacrolimus. Further studies are needed to optimize the therapy to maximize efficacy and minimize toxicity.

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A narrative review of studies assessing the quality of life in patients with generalized pustular psoriasis

Payal M Patel 1, Stephanie N Sanchez-Melendez 2 3, Vinod E Nambudiri Exp Dermatol. 2023 Aug;32(8):1227-1234. doi: 10.1111/exd.14787

Generalized pustular psoriasis (GPP) is a clinical entity distinct from psoriasis, associated with a poor clinical prognosis, often resulting in severe systemic complications and mortality. The relapsing nature of the disease with recurrent or intermittent flares imposes a significant burden on patients’ quality of life (QoL). Although inadequately studied, QoL data in GPP patients has been a recent point of investigation. We conducted a literature search on PubMed/MEDLINE using the following search terms: ‘generalized pustular psoriasis’ OR ‘pustular psoriasis’ AND ‘quality of life’. We identified 12 relevant articles that provide insight into the large impact of GPP on the QoL of patients, the burden of the disease and the treatment, and the success of new treatment options in making a clinically important difference to QoL. This review illustrates a need for routine assessment of the QoL in interventional clinical trials for GPP and during physician encounters. This information can help guide clinicians on how to tailor the treatment approach from the patient’s perspective or illustrate whether new therapies offer meaningful benefits to patient care as we enter an era of exciting new treatments for this challenging condition.

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Treatment Strategies in Neutrophilic Dermatoses: A Comprehensive Review

Grisell Starita-Fajardo 1, David Lucena-López 1, María Asunción Ballester-Martínez 2, Montserrat Fernández-Guarino 2, Andrés González-García Int J Mol Sci. 2023 Oct 26;24(21):15622. doi: 10.3390/ijms242115622

Neutrophilic dermatoses (NDs) are a group of noninfectious disorders characterized by the presence of a sterile neutrophilic infiltrate without vasculitis histopathology. Their physiopathology is not fully understood. The association between neutrophilic dermatoses and autoinflammatory diseases has led some authors to propose that both are part of the same spectrum of diseases. The classification of NDs depends on clinical and histopathological features. This review focuses on the recent developments of treatments in these pathologies.

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Use of Biological Therapies for the Management of Pustular Psoriasis: A New Era?

Matteo Megna 1, Elisa Camela 2, Angelo Ruggiero 1, Teresa Battista 1, Fabrizio Martora 1, Sara Cacciapuoti 1, Luca Potestio. Clin Cosmet Investig Dermatol. 2023 Jun 28:16:1677-1690. doi=10.2147/CCID.S407812

Generalized pustular psoriasis (GPP) is a severe and rare form of psoriasis, being a potentially life-threatening condition, characterized by recurring episodes or flares of widespread cutaneous erythema with macroscopic sterile pustules. An irregular innate immune response is linked to GPP, which is considered an auto-inflammatory disorder, while innate and adaptive immunopathogenic responses are involved in psoriasis pathogenesis. In consequence, different cytokine cascades have been suggested to be mainly involved in the pathogenesis of each different psoriasis form, with the interleukin (IL)23/IL17 axis implied in plaque psoriasis, and the IL36 pathway in the GPP. As regards GPP treatment, conventional systemic drugs available for plaque psoriasis are usually used as the first-line treatment option. However, contraindications and adverse events often limit the use of these therapies. In this scenario, biologic drugs may represent a promising treatment option. To date, even if 12 different biologics have been approved for plaque psoriasis, none of these is approved for GPP where they are employed off-label. Recently, spesolimab, an anti-IL36 receptor monoclonal antibody, has been recently approved for GPP. The purpose of this article is to assess the current literature about the use of biological therapies for the treatment of GPP to establish the basis for a shared GPP management algorithm.

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Mild generalised pustular psoriasis patient with a heterozygous hypomorphic MPO variant successfully treated with granulocyte and monocyte adsorption apheresis

Takuya Takeichi 1Takenori Yoshikawa 1Muhammad Nasir Iqbal 2Muhammad Farooq 3Tomoki Taki 1Yoshinao Muro 1Yutaka Shimomura 4Mariko Seishima 5Masashi Akiyama 1 Exp Dermatol. 2023 Sep;32(9):1557-1562. doi: 10.1111/exd.14846.

Pathogenic variants in MPO, which encodes the myeloperoxidase, were reported as causative genetic defects in several cases of generalised pustular psoriasis (GPP) in addition to patients with myeloperoxidase deficiency in 2020. However, which clinical subtypes of GPP patients have pathogenic variants in MPO remains largely undetermined, and elucidating this is clinically important. The present report outlines a mild case of GPP with a rare missense heterozygous variant, c.1810C>T p.(Arg604Cys), in MPO. Our structural analysis and functional assays to measure myeloperoxidase activity suggest that the present MPO substitution is a hypomorphic variant in MPO. Thus, the mild phenotype of the present GPP patient might be associated with an incomplete hypomorphic loss-of-function variant in MPO. Additionally, the severe intractable edematous pustules and erythema improved dramatically after five rounds of granulocyte and monocyte adsorption apheresis (GMA) therapy. This is the first report of GMA treatment for GPP associated with a pathogenic variant in MPO, as far as we know. Our findings suggest that GMA might be a useful and powerful tool for controlling GPP in patients with myeloperoxidase deficiency.

Mild generalised pustular psoriasis patient with a heterozygous hypomorphic MPO variant successfully treated with granulocyte and monocyte adsorption apheresis – PubMed (

Mild generalised pustular psoriasis patient with a heterozygous hypomorphic MPO variant successfully treated with granulocyte and monocyte adsorption apheresis – Takeichi – 2023 – Experimental Dermatology – Wiley Online Library

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A real-world, single-center experience and the immediate impact of granulocyte and monocyte adsorption apheresis on generalized pustular psoriasis

Hideaki Uchida 1Masahiro Kamata 2Shota Egawa 1Mayumi Nagata 1Saki Fukaya 1Kotaro Hayashi 1Atsuko Fukuyasu 1Takamitsu Tanaka 1Takeko Ishikawa 1Takamitsu Ohnishi 1Kazumitsu Sugiura 3Yayoi Tada 

J Am Acad Dermatol 2022 Nov;87(5):1181-1184. doi: 10.1016/j.jaad.2022.03.001. 

Granulocyte and monocyte adsorption apheresis (GMA) is an extracorporeal circulation therapy that removes activated granulocytes and monocytes, which can be easily introduced in clinics and hospitals where hemodialysis is performed. Its safety profile  allows for its administration without screening and for its concomitant use with other therapies, indicating that GMA can be a good additional option for GPP treatment. However, the evidence for its efficacy and safety is limited because of the rarity of GPP. Furthermore, its immediate impact on GPP has not been assessed yet. Therefore, we report our real-world experience of 14 patients with GPP treated with GMA after systemic treatment.GMA can be administered with other systemic therapies, including biologics and conventional therapy (objective A). Furthermore, its good safety profile allows GMA administration to a wide range of patients, including elderly patients and those with complications, possible active infection, or malignancy (objectives B and C). Moreover, our study revealed an immediate significant improvement in BT, accompanied by slight decreases in the WBC count and CRP level, indicating that GMA contributes to the rapid suppression of acute inflammation in patients with GPP.

A real-world, single-center experience and the immediate impact of granulocyte and monocyte adsorption apheresis on generalized pustular psoriasis – PubMed (

A real-world, single-center experience and the immediate impact of granulocyte and monocyte adsorption apheresis on generalized pustular psoriasis – Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology (

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Pustular psoriasis as an autoinflammatory keratinization disease (AiKD): Genetic predisposing factors and promising therapeutic targets

Masashi Akiyama 

J Dermatol Sci 2022 Jan;105(1):11-17. doi: 10.1016/j.jdermsci.2021.11.009. 

Pustular psoriasis is a chronic inflammatory skin disease characterized by erythematous plaques with sterile pustules. It includes the distinct clinical entities generalized pustular psoriasis (GPP), acrodermatitis continua of Hallopeau (ACH) and palmoplantar pustular psoriasis (PPPP). Recently clarified pathomechanisms of pustular psoriasis indicate that hyperactivation of the skin innate immunity, including of the IL-1/IL-36 axis, plays an important role in the pathogenesis of pustular psoriasis. Autoinflammatory keratinization disease (AiKD) is the umbrella clinical entity for inflammatory keratinization disorders with genetic autoinflammatory pathomechanisms, and pustular psoriasis is a representative AiKD. To date, mutations/variants in five genes-IL36RN, CARD14, AP1S3, MPO and SERPINA3-have been reported to be genetic causative or predisposing factors for pustular psoriasis. The pathogenic mechanisms induced by the mutations/variants in these genes are all closely related to the excessive activation of skin innate immunity and autoinflammation. A number of biologics (e.g., tumor necrosis factor inhibitors, IL-17/IL-17 receptor inhibitors and IL-23 inhibitors) and granulocyte and monocyte adsorption apheresis are used to treat pustular psoriasis. Recently, based on novel information on the pathomechanisms of pustular psoriasis, which are mainly associated with autoinflammation, inhibitors of several pathogenic pathways, including of the IL-1, IL-36, IL-8 and granulocyte colony-stimulating factor signaling pathways, have been studied as emerging treatments.

Pustular psoriasis as an autoinflammatory keratinization disease (AiKD): Genetic predisposing factors and promising therapeutic targets – PubMed (

Pustular psoriasis as an autoinflammatory keratinization disease (AiKD): Genetic predisposing factors and promising therapeutic targets – Journal of Dermatological Science (

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GS2-03 Japanese apheresis guidelines for the management and treatment of generalized pustular psoriasis, pustulosis palmoplantaris and psoriasis arthropathica

Miho Hatanaka, Yuko Higashi, Takuro Kanekura

poster at ISFA 2019 pag 104

Generalized pustular psoriasis (GPP) is a rare disease characterized by recurrent fever and
systemic flushing accompanied by extensive sterile pustules. Treatments of GPP are usually
topical corticosteroids, activated vitamin D3 ointment, ultraviolet light (UV) therapy, and
oral administration of etretinate, cyclosporine, or methotrexate. Recently, biologics such as
TNF- α; inhibitors, anti-IL-17- and anti-IL-23 antibodies are used. Pustulosis palmoplantaris
(PPP) is a chronic recurrent disorder of the palms and soles characterized by sterile intradermal
pustules. PPP often accompanies joint symptoms. In some instances, PPP is associated with
a focus of infection somewhere in the body; elimination of the infection sometimes improve
symptom. Some treatments of GPP are used for PPP. Psoriatic arthritis (PsA) is a disease
characterized by skin and nail psoriasis together with widespread musculoskeletal inflammation
such as peripheral joint disease, axial joint disease, enthesitis, and dactylitis. Treatment of
PsA is oral administration of NSAID’s, cyclosporine, methotrexate and phosphodiesterase 4
inhibitors for mild to moderate cases. Biologics; TNF- αinhibitors, anti-IL-17- and anti-IL-23
antibodies; have been approved for severe or advanced cases. Granulocyte/monocyte adsorption
apheresis (GMA) is an extracorporeal therapy designed to remove and suppress the functions
of neutrophils, macrophages and monocytes that accumulate in the inflamed tissue and are
involved in the pahogenesis. GMA may be considered as a safe treatment modality with few
side-effects for GPP, PPP and PsA. The effect and safety of GMA have been reported mostly in
case reports. Although the effect and safety of GMA were demonstrated in a multicenter study.
GMA’s utility is expected based on the mechanism of action.

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SY5-01 Granulocyte and monocyte adsorption apheresis for generalized pustular psoriasis

Mariko Seishima

poster at ISFA 2019 pag 57

Generalized pustular psoriasis (GPP) is a rare inflammatory skin disorder characterized by a fever, edema, and generalized erythema with neutrophilic pustules. It sometimes occurs in the course of psoriasis vulgaris, or develops suddenly without any history of psoriasis. Mutations of the IL36RN (deficiency of interleukin thirty-six receptor antagonist: DITRA), CARD14 and AP1S3 genes underlie monogenic auto-inflammatory disorders causing GPP. GPP patients are usually treated with oral administration of etretinate, cyclosporine, and metrexate, biologics including TNF α inhibitors, antibodies to IL-17, IL-17 receptor, and IL-23 p19, and granulocyte and monocyte adsorption apheresis (GMA). Cyclosporine, TNF α inhibitors, and GMA are used for GPP in pediatric, pregnant, or lactating patients. GMA is an extracorporeal apheresis that removes activated granulocytes and monocytes using a column packed with cellulose acetate beads. Multicenter study was performed to access efficacy of selectively depleting the myeloid lineage leukocytes in GPP patients. Fifteen patients with persistent moderate to severe GPP despite conventional therapy were included. Based on the GPP severity scores relative to entry, the overall scores improved, and the area of erythroderma, pustules, and edema decreased. Likewise, Dermatology Life Quality Index (DLQI) improved, reflecting better daily function and quality of life. Twelve out of 14 patients were judged as responders (85.7%), and 10 out of 12 patients maintained the clinical response for10 weeks after the last GMA session without any change in medication. Thus, GMA is estimated to be safe and effective, suggesting a major role of granulocytes/ monocytes in the immunepathogenesis of GPP. Recent study showed that GMA was effective for 100% of DITRA patients and for 64.7% of the patients with IL36RN mutation-negative GPP. Thus, GMA is effective therapy for both DITRA and non-DITRA GPP patients. GMA may be a useful therapy for all GPP patients

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