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Adv Wound Care (New Rochelle). 2012 Feb;1(1):17-22.

Wound Healing Angiogenesis: Innovations and Challenges in Acute and Chronic Wound Healing.

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Department of Radiation Oncology, Edwin L. Steele Laboratory for Tumor Biology, Massachusetts General Hospital , Boston, MA 02114.
Department of Molecular Physiology and Pharmacology and the Center for Innovations in Wound Healing Research, Tufts University School of Medicine and Graduate Program in Cellular and Molecular Physiology, Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences, Tufts University , Boston, MA 02111.



Formation of new blood vessels, by either angiogenesis or vasculogenesis, is critical for normal wound healing. Major processes in neovascularization include (i) growth-promoting or survival factors, (ii) proteolytic enzymes, (iii) activators of multiple differentiated and progenitor cell types, and (iv) permissible microenvironments. A central aim of wound healing research is to "convert" chronic, disease-impaired wounds into those that will heal.


Reduced ability to re-establish a blood supply to the injury site can ultimately lead to wound chronicity.


(1) Human fetal endothelial progenitor cells can stimulate wound revascularization and repair following injury, as demonstrated in a novel mouse model of diabetic ischemic healing. (2) Advances in bioengineering reveal exciting alternatives by which wound repair may be facilitated via the creation of vascularized microfluidic networks within organ constructs created ex vivo for wound implantation. (3) A "personalized" approach to regenerative medicine may be enabled by the identification of protein components present within individual wound beds, both chronic and acute.


Despite the development of numerous therapies, impaired angiogenesis and wound chronicity remain significant healthcare problems. As such, innovations in enhancing wound revascularization would lead to significant advances in wound healing therapeutics and patient care.


Insights into endothelial progenitor cell biology together with developments in the field of tissue engineering and molecular diagnostics should not only further advance our understanding of the molecular mechanisms regulating wound repair but also offer innovative solutions to promote the healing of chronic and acute wounds in vivo.

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