Diabetic Wound Healing | Action Medical Research | Children's Charity | Children's Charity

Diabetic wound healing

This research was completed on 31 October 2009

Project LeaderDr D Becker, PhD
LocationDepartment of Anatomy and Developmental Biology, University College London
Grant awarded6 July 2006
Start date1 November 2006
End date31 October 2009
Grant amount£153,730.00
Grant codeAP1055

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The number of people diagnosed with diabetes in the UK passed the 2 million mark in 2005. Estimates suggest that this figure will continue to rise affecting the lives of increasing numbers of individuals and putting an ever increasing load on the NHS. Many complications can occur due to diabetes such as heart disease, strokes, kidney disease and blindness. However, the most common reason for hospital admission is due to diabetic foot ulcers which are notoriously slow to heal. These ulcers cause the patient great pain and if not treated effectively can lead to limb amputation. These researchers have found that the way cells communicate is crucial to the wound healing process. The team has shown that they can modify cell to cell communication at a wound site by applying a bioactive gel which speeds up wound healing and reduces scar formation. Cells can communicate with one another directly through intercellular channels and recent work indicates that cell to cell communication in a diabetic wound is abnormal and is likely to contribute to slow healing. The project aims to confirm the reason for slow healing in diabetics and investigate the ability of the bioactive gel to speed up the process. If successful, this project would provide the first effective treatment for long term wounds such as diabetic foot ulcers.

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