The role of inflammation in cutaneous repair

Joan Röhl, Andreea Zaharia, Maren Rudolph, Rachael Z. Murray

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


Inflammation is a fundamental component of the normal adult wound healing response occurring even in the absence of infection. It performs many beneficial roles such as the clearing of damaged cells and extracellular matrix (ECM), the removal of pathogens that might otherwise multiply and spread, and the secretion of mediators that regulate other aspects of wound healing such as proliferation, re-epithelialisation and
wound remodelling. Yet, excess and/or prolonged inflammation is detrimental to wound healing and leads to increased fibrosis and scarring, which can be disfiguring and, in cases such as contractures, can lead to disability. Furthermore, excessive inflammation is a major contributing factor to the persistence of chronic non-healing wounds, which are “stuck” in the inflammatory phase of healing and fail to re-epithelialise.
Current research suggest that the type of immune cells, their timing and the level of inflammation in a wound could have a dramatic effect on whether a wound heals in a timely fashion and the final quality of the repaired tissue. Studies suggest that altering the level of inflammation might be beneficial in terms of reducing scarring and improving the rate of healing in chronic wounds. This review looks at the role of the major immune cells in normal and impaired wound healing and strategies that might be used to reduce inflammation in wounds
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8-15
JournalWound Practice and Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2015
Externally publishedYes


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