Skin structure and function: The body's primary defense against infection

Lindsey A. Brodell, Kenneth S. Rosenthal

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


The skin serves as a wall-like barrier to separate and protect the inside of our body from the microbial enemies of the environment and provide a primary defense against infection. The layers of the skin, like the outer wall and secondary inner walls surrounding a medieval city, not only provide protection from external enemies, but also provide niches where normal flora bacteria and fungi can live and conduct business. The structure of the skin and its antimicrobial properties are presented with a discussion of examples of microbes that overcome these protections to cause disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)113-117
Number of pages5
JournalInfectious Diseases in Clinical Practice
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1 2008
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases


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