In the presence of lymphedema, an overabundance of mast cells, which normally promote wound healing, may cause harm by leading to the overproduction of interleukin-10, preventing certain white blood cells from reaching the wound area, according to recent study results.
Using a rodent model comprising one control group and the other with severe lymphatic dysfunction, researchers administered skin wounds and found that the group with lymphatic dysfunction showed delayed wound healing vs. the control group. Mast cell numbers were also increased in the group with lymphatic dysfunction and macrophage numbers were decreased.
Study results indicated that the delayed wound healing in the lympedematous skin is the result of too many mast cells and elevated interleukin-10 expression. These results may one day provide better treatments for elderly individuals with skin ulcers in the lower extremities, for women with upper-extremity wounds following breast cancer surgery and skin wounds of any type that are not healing as they should.
“Improvement of lymphedema is important for treatment of skin ulcers,” Makoto Sugaya, MD, PhD, a researchers from the department of dermatology at the University of Tokyo, Japan, stated in a press release. “It is not just fluid retention, but inflammatory cells and cytokines that cause delayed wound healing.”
Disclosure: The researchers have no relevant financial disclosures.