Hypomelanosis of Ito: Electron microscopical observations on two new cases

V. Cavallari, A. F. Ussia, M. Siragusa, C. Schepis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


An ultrastructural study on two new cases of Ito's hypomelanosis is reported. According with previous studies on this pathological condition, a marked reduction of melanocytes is detected in the hypopigmented areas. In the proximity of preserved melanocytes, a nearly normal content of melanosomes is detected in basal keratinocytes. Melanocyte profiles are frequently located in close relationship with the basal lamina. An apparent increase of nerve endings is demonstrated at the dermo-epidermal edge. Nerve fibres show no pathological alterations. A functional impairment of the melanocytes is hypothesized, involving regressive changes and a tendency towards a round shape of their profiles. This could in part account for the prevalent basal location of the melanocytes. The role of the dermal nerve endings in the pathogenesis of the hypopigmented lesions is discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)87-92
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Dermatological Science
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1996


  • Blaschko's lines
  • Hypomelanosis of Ito
  • Ultrastructure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology


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