Dr. Maksim Plikus and Dr. Qing Nie are making scar-free wound healing a reality.

That muddled, hairless skin we know as scar tissue that deep wounds leave behind may also be left behind eventually, as a result of NSF-funded research.

A multidisciplinary combination of biologists and mathematicians at the NSF-Simons Center for Multiscale Cell Fate Research at the University of California Irvine seized on a discovery that wound fibroblasts – the most common cells found in connective tissue – have diverse origins, and some are derived from blood cells, called myeloid cells.Their discovery that myeloid cells can be reprogrammed into new fibroblasts and then, further, into new fat cells in wounds is not only novel, but central to achieving scar-free healing, potentially.  Along with many local skin cell types, circulating myeloid cells are “drafted” into the wound to help repair it.

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