Substance in toad skin could help scarless healing: research

Chinese scientists have discovered a substance in toad skin which could help promote skin tissue regeneration and repair, thus helping wounds heal without scars.

The formation of scar tissue is a common by-product of wound repair, leading to serious clinical dysfunction and aesthetic problems.

How to promote tissue regeneration while avoiding and reducing scar formation is of great concern.

Scientists from Kunming Institute of Zoology under Chinese Academy of Sciences have found that the pore-forming proteins in the skin of Bombina maxima, a species of toad in southwest China, have the function of inducing tissue repair and promoting scar-free healing of wounds.

Zhang Yun, the lead researcher, said he got inspiration from the characteristics of amphibian skin.

“The skin of amphibians bears the functions of breathing and water-salt balance, and wound repairs must be scar-free so as not to damage the physiological functions and cause fatal consequences,” Zhang said.

Zhang said the substance can not only promote wound healing, but also help reduce traumatic edema, avoid scar formation, and protect skin wounds against antibiotic-resistant bacterial infection.

This research further explained the mechanism of tissue regeneration and scar formation.

It also provided a reference for the development of scar-free therapeutic drugs.

The research was published in the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) Journal. (Xinhua/NAN)

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