Protein Promotes Wound Healing in Diabetic Mice

Angiopoietin-1 fusion protein may represent a new therapeutic for diabetics

FRIDAY, March 17 (HealthDay News) -- An engineered protein can promote rapid wound healing in diabetic mice when given systemically or topically, according to a study published online March 16 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Early Edition.

Gou Young Koh, M.D., Ph.D., from Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology in Daejeon, and colleagues fused the vascular growth factor angiopoietin-1 (Ang1) to the cartilage oligomeric matrix protein (COMP), creating a stable, soluble form of Ang1. The researchers used an Ang1-COMP-expressing adenovirus or a control virus to systemically treat diabetic mice with tail wounds. In other experiments, they used COMP-Ang1 or an unrelated protein topically to treat wounds.

Mice treated with the fusion protein either systemically or topically had significantly faster wound closure, increased regeneration of tail skin, and significantly higher densities of blood vessels around the wound site compared to mice treated with the unrelated proteins. There were no adverse side effects, according to the study.

"Taken together, these findings indicate that COMP-Ang1 can promote wound healing in diabetes through enhanced angiogenesis, lymphangiogenesis and blood flow," Koh and colleagues conclude.

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