Chitosan/LiCl composite scaffolds promote skin regeneration in full-thickness loss
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Small molecules loaded into biological materials present a promising strategy for stimulating endogenous repair mechanisms for in situ skin regeneration. Lithium can modulate various biologic processes, promoting proliferation, angiogenesis, and decreasing inflammation. However, its role in skin repair is rarely reported. In this study, we loaded lithium chloride (LiCl) into the chitosan (CHI) hydrogel and develop a sterile and biocompatible sponge scaffold through freeze-drying. In-vitro assessment demonstrated that the CHI-LiCl composite scaffolds (CLiS) possessed favorable cytocompatibility, swelling and biodegradation. We created full-thickness skin wounds in male C57BL/c mice to evaluate the healing capacity of CLiS. Compared with the wounds of control and CHI scaffold (CS) groups, the wounds in the CLiS-treated group showed reduced inflammation, improved angiogenesis, accelerated re-epithelialization, sustained high expression of β-catenin with a small amount of regenerated hair follicles. Therefore, CLiS may be a promising therapeutic dressing for skin wound repair and regeneration.
Keywordswound healing chitosan LiCl small molecule skin regeneration
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This work was supported by the National Key Research & Development Program of China (2017YFC1104701 and 2017YFC1103300), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (81721092 and 81501669), and the Key Research and Development Project of Hainan (ZDYF2016135 and ZDYF2017095).
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