Newswise — The increasing prevalence of diabetes worldwide has led to a rise in diabetic wounds, such as diabetic foot ulcers, which are challenging to treat and can result in amputation. Traditional treatments have limited effectiveness, underscoring the urgent need for innovative solutions.

Recently, a new study (DOI: 10.1093/burnst/tkae001) published on February 2024, in the journal Burns & Trauma, a team from Shengjing Hospital of China Medical University has made a significant discovery. They found that exosomes, obtained from adipose mesenchymal stem cells (ADSC-Exos), drastically improve the healing process of skin wounds in diabetic mice. This vital research sheds light on the urgent health crisis presented by diabetic wounds, known for their severe complications and debilitating effects.

In diabetic wounds, high glucose levels disrupt normal cellular processes, including autophagy, leading to impaired healing. The study meticulously demonstrated through a series of sophisticated experiments-ranging from molecular analyses in cell cultures to comprehensive wound healing assays in diabetic mouse models-that treatment with these stem cell-derived exosomes restores autophagy, revitalizes skin cells, and accelerates wound closure. Importantly, this approach tackles the underlying cellular dysfunctions caused by diabetes, providing a highly effective strategy for enhancing wound repair. This research opens new pathways for developing advanced treatments for diabetic patients, potentially transforming the management of diabetic wounds and reducing the need for drastic measures like amputations.

Lead researcher Dr. Zhe Wang from the Department of Pathology at Shengjing Hospital of China Medical University states, "Our study not only highlights the pivotal role of autophagy in wound healing but also opens new avenues for treating chronic diabetic wounds through ADSC-Exos."

The application of ADSC-Exos represents a promising therapeutic strategy for diabetic wound healing. By enhancing autophagy, ADSC-Exos improve the function of epidermal cells, facilitating rapid and effective wound closure. This could dramatically improve the quality of life for individuals with diabetes, reducing the risk of complications and the need for amputations.





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Funding information

This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (81601692, 81901969), the Technology Research from the Department of Education of Liaoning Province (JCZR2020013) and the 345 Talent Project of the Shenjing Hospital at the China Medical University.

About Burns & Trauma

Burns & Trauma is an open access, peer-reviewed journal publishing the latest developments in basic, clinical, and translational research related to burns and traumatic injuries, with a special focus on various aspects of biomaterials, tissue engineering, stem cells, critical care, immunobiology, skin transplantation, prevention, and regeneration of burns and trauma injury.

Journal Link: Burns & Trauma, February 2024