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Stem/Progenitor Cells Can Predict Wound Healing

Assays during first weeks of care can predict wound healing in patients with diabetic foot ulcers

TUESDAY, Nov. 3, 2015 (HealthDay News) — Stem/progenitor cell (SPC) assays can predict wound healing in diabetic foot ulcers (DFUs), according to a study published online Oct. 20 in Diabetes.

Stephen R. Thom, M.D., Ph.D., from the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore, and colleagues collected blood and debrided wound margins for eight weeks from 100 patients undergoing weekly evaluations and treatment. They examined SPC number and intracellular content of hypoxia inducible factors (HIFs).

The researchers found that in the first two weeks of care, more SPCs entered the bloodstream in patients who healed (37 patients) than those who did not (63 patients). The number of bloodborne SPCs and cellular content of HIFs at study entry and first week follow-up visit predicted healing. Among week-to-week assessment of bloodborne SPC’s HIF factors, strong correlations were identified.

“We conclude that assays of SPCs during the first weeks of care in patients with DFUs can provide insight into how well wounds will respond, and may aid with decisions on use of adjunctive measures,” the authors write.

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