Richard Presland , PhD

Associate Professor, Oral Health Sciences
Graduate Program Director, Oral Health Sciences
Adjunct Associate Professor, Medicine

Office: B-224F, Lab: B-137

Research Interests

My research interests focus in two different areas, the study of epithelial keratinocyte differentiation and saliva proteomics. The keratinocyte differentiation work has focused on two different proteins that are markers of keratinized epithelia, filaggrin and caspase-14. Filaggrin is an important component of the epithelial barrier, the stratum corneum. Mutations in the FLG gene result in the dry skin disease ichthyosis vulgaris and are a strong genetic risk factor for the common disease atopic dermatitis (eczema). Recently it has been demonstrated that the filaggrin protein is a substrate of the protease caspase-14; caspase-14 itself appears to play a key role in protecting the skin against UVB damage.

The second research area involves proteomic profiling of saliva from chronic graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) patients. This T- and B-lymphocyte-driven disease develops in at least 50% of patients who have undergone an allogeneic bone marrow or stem cell transplant. The goal of this project is to develop a protein biomarker panel that could be used in diagnosis of chronic GVHD as well as to gain a better understanding of the pathogenesis of this complex immune disorder.


Presland RB. Function of filaggrin and caspase-14 in formation and maintenance of the epithelial barrier (PDF). Dermatol. Sinica 27:1-14, 2009.

Presland RB, Jurevic RJ. Making sense of the epithelial barrier: what molecular biology and genetics tell us about the functions of oral mucosal and epidermal tissues. J. Dent. Educ. 66:564-574, 2002.

Presland RB, Dale BA. Epithelial structural proteins of skin and oral cavity: function in health and disease. Crit. Rev. Oral Biol. Med. 11: 383-408, 2000.


Dr. Presland received a B.Sc. (Hons) (1979) and a M.Sc. With Honors (1981) in Biochemistry from the University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand. He received a Ph.D. (1987) in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from the University of Adelaide, South Australia. He has been at the University of Washington since 1989 and a faculty member since 1994.


  1. ORALB 580 – Introduction to Molecular Biology Laboratory
  2. ORALB 579 – Molecular Biology


  1. Devic I, Hwang H, Edgar JS, Izutsu K, Presland R, Pan C, Goodlett DR, Wang Y, Armaly J, Tumas V, Zabetian CP, Leverenz JB, Shi M, Zhang J. Salivary α-synuclein and DJ-1: potential biomarkers for Parkinson’s disease. Brain. 134(Pt 7):e178, 2011. PubMed PMID: 21349902.
  2. Hoste E, Kemperman P, Devos M, Denecker G, Kezic S, Yau N, Gilbert B, Lippens S, De Groote P, Roelandt R, Van Damme P, Gevaert K, Presland RB, Takahara H, Puppels G, Caspers P, Vandenabeele P, Declercq W. Caspase-14 is required for filaggrin degradation to natural moisturizing factors in the skin. J. Invest. Dermatol. 131:2233-41, 2011. PubMed PMID: 21654840.
  3. Fatherazi S, Matsa-Dunn D, Foster BL, Rutherford RB, Somerman MJ, Presland RB. Phosphate regulates osteopontin gene transcription. J. Dent. Res. 88:39-44, 2009.
  4. Fallon PG, Sasaki T, Sandilands A, Campbell LE, Saunders SP, Mangan NE, Callanan JJ, Kawasaki H, Shiohama A, Kubo A, Sundberg JP, Presland RB, Fleckman P, Shimizu N, Kudoh J, Irvine AD, Amagai M, McLean WH. A homozygous frameshift mutation in the mouse Flg gene facilitates enhanced percutaneous allergen priming. Nat. Genet. 41:602-8, 2009.
  5. Denecker G, Hoste E, Gilbert B, Hochepied T, Ovaere P, Lippens S, Van den Broecke C, Van Damme P, D’Herde K, Hachem JP, Borgonie G, Presland RB, Schoonjans L, Libert C, Vandekerckhove J, Gevaert K, Vandenabeele P, Declercq W. Caspase-14 protects against epidermal UVB photodamage and water loss. Nat Cell Biol.
  6. Fatherazi S, Presland RB, Belton CM, Goodwin P, Al-Qutub M, Trbic Z, Macdonald G, Schubert MM, Izutsu KT. Evidence that TRPC4 supports the calcium selective I(CRAC)-like current in human gingival keratinocytes. Pflugers Arch. 453:879-889, 2007.
  7. Park K, Kuechle MK, Choe Y, Craik CS, Lawrence OT, Presland RB. Expression and characterization of constitutively active human caspase-14. Biochem. Biophys. Res. Comm. 347:941-948, 2006.
  8. Smith FJ, Irvine AD, Terron-Kwiatkowski A, Sandilands A, Campbell LE, Zhao Y,Liao H, Evans AT, Goudie DR, Lewis-Jones S, Arseculeratne G, Munro CS, Sergeant A, O’regan G, Bale SJ, Compton JG, Digiovanna JJ, Presland RB, Fleckman P, McLean WH. Loss-of-function mutations in the gene encoding filaggrin cause ichthyosis vulgaris. Nat Genet. 38:337-342, 2006.
  9. Cai S, Fatherazi S, Presland RB, Belton CM, Roberts FA, Goodwin PC, Schubert MM, Izutsu KT. Evidence that TRPC1 contributes to calcium-induced differentiation of human keratinocytes. Pflugers Archives, Eur. J. Physiol. 452:43-52, 2006.
  10. Wang H, Presland RB, Piepkorn M. A search for CDKN2A/p16INK4a mutations in melanocytic nevi from patients with melanoma and spouse controls by use of laser-captured microdissection. Arch. Dermatol. 141:177-180, 2005.
  11. Presland RB, Fleckman P. Tetracycline-regulated gene expression in epidermal keratinocytes. Methods Mol. Biol. 289:273-286, 2005.
  12. Presland RB, Coulombe PA, Eckert RL, Mao-Qiang M, Feingold KR, Elias PM. Barrier function in transgenic mice overexpressing K16, involucrin, and filaggrin in the suprabasal epidermis.J. Invest. Dermatol. 123:603-606, 2004.
  13. Chien AJ, Presland RB, Kuechle MK. Processing of native caspase-14 occurs at an atypical cleavage site in normal epidermal differentiation. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 296:911-917, 2002.
  14. Pearton DJ, Dale BA, Presland RB. Functional analysis of the profilaggrin N-terminal peptide. Identification of peptide sequences that regulate cytoplasmic and nuclear distribution. J. Invest. Dermatol. 119:661-669, 2002.
  15. Presland RB, Kuechle MK, Lewis SP, Fleckman P, Dale BA. Regulated expression of human filaggrin in keratinocytes results in cytoskeletal disruption, loss of cell-cell adhesion, and cell cycle arrest. Exp. Cell Res. 270:199-213, 2001.
  16. Pearton DJ, Nirunsuksiri W, Rehemtulla A, Lewis SP, Presland RB, Dale BA. Proprotein convertases expression and localization in epidermis: evidence for multiple roles and substrates. Exp. Dermatol. 10:193-203, 2001.
  17. Kuechle MK, Predd HM, Fleckman P, Dale BA, Presland RB. Caspase 14, a keratinocyte specific caspase: mRNA splice variants and expression pattern in embryonic and adult mouse. Cell Death Diff. 8:868-870, 2001.
  18. Presland RB, Boggess D, Lewis SP, Hull C, Fleckman P, Sundberg JP. Loss of normal profilaggrin and filaggrin in flaky tail (ft/ft) mice: an animal model for the filaggrin-deficient skin disease ichthyosis vulgaris. J. Invest. Dermatol. 115:1072-1081, 2000.