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Am J Pathol. 2006 Sep;169(3):1080-7.

Vascular endothelial growth factor-C accelerates diabetic wound healing.

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  • 1Molecular/Cancer Biology Laboratory, Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research, Biomedicum Helsinki and Helsinki University Hospital, Finland.


Diabetes impairs numerous aspects of tissue repair. Failure of wound angiogenesis is known to delay diabetic wound healing, whereas the importance of lymphangiogenesis for wound healing is unclear. We have examined whether overexpression of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)-C via an adenoviral vector could improve the healing of full-thickness punch biopsy wounds in genetically diabetic (db/db) mice. We found that VEGF-C enhanced angiogenesis and lymphangiogenesis in the wound and significantly accelerated wound healing in comparison to the control wounds. VEGF-C also recruited inflammatory cells, some of which expressed VEGFR-3. On the other hand, when the function of endogenous VEGF-C/VEGF-D was blocked with a specific inhibitor, wound closure was delayed even further. These results suggest a function for VEGF-C in wound healing and demonstrate the therapeutic potential of VEGF-C in the treatment of diabetic wounds.

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