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Burns in the Elderly: Potential Role of Stem Cells.

ABSTRACT: Burns in the elderly continue to be a challenge despite advances in burn wound care management. Elderly burn patients continue to have poor outcomes compared to the younger population. This is secondary to changes in the quality of the aged skin, leading to impaired wound healing, aggravated immunologic and inflammatory responses, and age-related comorbidities. Considering the fast-growing elderly population, it is imperative to understand the anatomic, physiologic, and molecular changes of the aging skin and the mechanisms involved in their wound healing process to prevent complications associated with burn wounds. Various studies have shown that stem cell-based therapies improve the rate and quality of wound healing and skin regeneration; however, the focus is on the younger population. In this paper, we start with an anatomical, physiological and molecular dissection of the elderly skin to understand why wound healing is delayed. We then review the potential use of stem cells in elderly burn wounds, as well as the mechanisms by which mesenchymal stem cell (MSCs)-based therapies may impact burn wound healing in the elderly. MSCs improve burn wound healing by stimulating and augmenting growth factor secretion and cell proliferation, and by modulating the impaired elderly immune response. MSCs can be used to expedite healing in superficial partial thickness burns and donor site wounds, improve graft take and prevent graft breakdown.


PROVIDER: S-EPMC7369885 | BioStudies | 2020-01-01

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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