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The recent convergence of genetic and biochemical evidence on the activities of lipoxygenase (LOX) enzymes has implicated the production of hepoxilin derivatives (fatty acid epoxyalcohols) in the pathways leading to formation of the water-impermeable barrier of the outer epidermis. The enzymes 12R-LOX and eLOX3 are mutated in a rare form of congenital ichthyosis, and, in vitro, the two enzymes function together to convert arachidonic acid to a specific hepoxilin. Taken together, these lines of evidence suggest an involvement of these enzymes and their products in skin barrier function in all normal subjects. The natural occurrence of the specific hepoxilin products, and their biological role, whether structural or signaling, remain to be defined.