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J Invest Dermatol. 1994 Nov;103(5):660-4.

Metalloproteinase activation cascade after burn injury: a longitudinal analysis of the human wound environment.

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Department of Cell Biology and Neuroscience, UT Southwestern Medical School, Dallas 75235.


In this paper, we present a longitudinal study on metalloproteinases in wound-fluid samples collected from three patients with partial- to full-thickness burn wounds. Gelatin zymography showed that 92-kDa gelatinase (MMP-9) and its 225-kDa complex could be detected in burn fluid beginning as early as 4-8 h after injury. Marked increases in MMP-9 levels as well as activation of the proenzyme occurred between day 0 and day 2. The 72-kDa gelatinase (MMP-2) proenzyme was not detected until day 2 and activated enzyme did not appear until day 4. Stromelysin (MMP-3), both proenzyme and activated-enzyme forms, was first observed on day 4. Fluid-phase proteinase activity detected by azocoll degradation roughly corresponded with the level of stromelysin rather than the gelatinases. Our results provide evidence for a regulated metalloproteinase activation cascade following acute traumatic injury and demonstrate in vivo expression of metalloproteinase activity.

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