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Research

ISSF Small Grant: Biocomplex matrices for studying wound healing in vitro and developing customized regenerative therapies for chronic wounds

Principal investigator: Helena AZEVEDO
Funding source(s): Wellcome Trust
 Start: 01-01-2016  /  End: 31-07-2016
 Amount: £12

Chronic wounds affect millions of people, inflicting significant pain and reducing the quality of life for the patients, as well as placing a substantial burden upon the health care systems.

The objective of this pilot project is to exploit peptide self-assembly to fabricate dynamic supramolecular hydrogels that will enable studying the role of the biophysical properties of the extracellular niche in regulating cellular processes, which naturally occur during skin wound healing.  In particular, we will evaluate the phenotype of dermal fibroblasts, which play a critical role during the proliferation phase of the wound healing response, migrating to the wound site and producing extracellular matrix proteins, growth factors and cytokines.  Molecular cross-talk between dermal fibroblasts and epidermal keratinocytes also is essential for coordinating the process of wound healing .