Breakthrough research discovery to help heal chronic wounds

(Medical Xpress)—The University of Queensland researchers have successfully restored wound healing in a model of diabetes paving the way for new treatments for chronic wounds.

Dr Mathieu Rodero from the UQ Centre for Clinical Research recently studied the behaviour of a group of , called macrophages, during normal and defective .

Dr Rodero was able to prove different subpopulations of macrophages had different, and sometimes opposing effects on wound healing.

"Macrophages play a critical role in ; however also cause the excessive inflammation, which results in defective wound healing," Dr Rodero said.

Researchers found a macrophage subpopulation that was associated with the healing of the wound.

These specific cells were missing in a model of that could not close.

An analysis of these subpopulations identified a group of "non-inflammatory" macrophages, which increased in proportion during normal wound healing, however was absent in delayed healing or chronic wounds.

"This is the first time that subpopulations of macrophages from a tissue have been analysed and compared with such scrutiny," Dr Rodero said.

"We were able to clearly identify the role of macrophages in the inflammation and repair phases, and ultimately restore the balance between these two aspects by using anti-inflammatory strategies."

Dr Rodero said an , coupled with an increase in conditions such as diabetes or obesity, had seen the prevalence of chronic wounds increasing in recent years.

"Most of us are programmed to heal promptly and avoid related complications," Dr Rodero said.

Dr Rodero is part of a research team led by UQ's Associate Professor Kiarash Khosrotehrani who focuses on skin-wound healing.

Associate Professor Khosrotehrani said cost the Australian government $2.6 billion per year.

"For those who are more fragile, such as the elderly, this process can be inadequate, resulting in chronically open wounds," Associate Professor Khosrotehrani said.

"Being able to modulate the inflammation to promote the healing of wounds is a novel and exciting prospect to improve our patients."

The study will be published in Journal of Investigative Dermatology today.

More information: www.nature.com/jid/journal/vao… ull/jid2012368a.html

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Artificial skin system can heal wounds

Dec 20, 2007

A new study in Artificial Organs tested the effects of a wound dressing created with hair follicular cells. The findings reveal that skin substitutes using living hair cells can increase wound healing.

Recommended for you

Diet affects men's and women's gut microbes differently

5 hours ago

The microbes living in the guts of males and females react differently to diet, even when the diets are identical, according to a study by scientists from The University of Texas at Austin and six other institutions published ...

Researchers explore what happens when heart cells fail

7 hours ago

Through a grant from the United States-Israel Binational Science Foundation, Biomedical Engineering Associate Professor Naomi Chesler will embark upon a new collaborative research project to better understand ...

Stem cells from nerves form teeth

9 hours ago

Researchers at Karolinska Institutet in Sweden have discovered that stem cells inside the soft tissues of the tooth come from an unexpected source, namely nerves. These findings are now being published in the journal Nature and co ...

User comments