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REVIEW ARTICLE
Year : 2012  |  Volume : 19  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 40-45

An overview of biological basis of pathologic scarring


1 Burns, Plastic Surgery and Hand Rehabilitation unit, Department of Surgery, Faculty of Clinical Sciences, College of Medicine University of Lagos, PMB 12003 Surulere, Lagos, Nigeria
2 Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Faculty of Dental sciences, College of Medicine, University of Lagos, PMB 12003 Surulere, Lagos, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
B O Mofikoya
Burns, Plastic Surgery and Hand Rehabilitation unit, Department of Surgery, Faculty of Clinical Sciences, College of Medicine University of Lagos, PMB 12003 Surulere, Lagos
Nigeria
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


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Summary Aims and objectives : To review the current mechanisms and biologic processes leading to the formation of pathologic scars. Materials and Methods: A computerised literature search was carried out using MEDLINE for all published articles on ''pathologic scarring''. The medical subject headings ''scarring'' were combined with ''mechanisms''. A review of selected relevant literature was then undertaken. Results: Scarless embryonal healing tends to be characterised by minimal inflammatory reaction mediated by reduced IL6,IL8 and hyaluronidase while there are elevated levels of hyaluronic acid MMP1to3, as well as IL10.The multifunctional cytokine TGF-B, its several isoforms as well as its postreceptor signalling mechanisms appears to play the key role in the scarring process . There is also evidence to show that PDGF, IGF and other cytokines regulate scarring . While conventional antiscarring agents target the fibroplasia phase, others such as tamoxifen ,calcium channel blockers, and imidazolaquinolines targets various phases of the scarring process . Conclusion: It appears that multiple mechanisms are involved in the phenotypical appearance of abnormal scarring. A deeper understanding of these mechanisms is pivotal to the development of better antiscarring therapies in the very near future .


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