17:14 09 January 2017
Doctors at the University of Pennsylvania have developed an alternate healing process to manipulate lesions so they heal as regenerated skin as opposed to scar tissue. This would mean scar-less wounds. The discovery could one day help people, particularly those who undergo operation or plastic surgery to achieve flawless skin.
Lead investigator Dr George Cotsarelis, the chair of the Department of Dermatology and Professor of Dermatology at Penn, said: 'Essentially, we can manipulate wound healing so that it leads to skin regeneration rather than scarring,'
'The secret is to regenerate hair follicles first. After that, the fat will regenerate in response to the signals from those follicles.'
'Typically, myofibroblasts were thought to be incapable of becoming a different type of cell,' Cotsarelis said.
'But our work shows we have the ability to influence these cells, and that they can be efficiently and stably converted into adipocytes.'
'The findings show we have a window of opportunity after wounding to influence the tissue to regenerate rather than scar,' said the study's lead author Maksim Plikus, PhD, an assistant professor of Developmental and Cell Biology at the University of California, Irvine.
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