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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 1997 Jul 18;236(2):231-8.

Towards a molecular definition of keratinocyte activation after acute injury to stratified epithelia.

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Department of Biological Chemistry, The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland 21205, USA.


While in recent years we have come to increasingly appreciate the multifaceted role of skin, probably none of these novel contributions is as vital as its barrier function, inferred centuries ago. In human skin this function is fulfilled nearly entirely by the epidermis, a thin stratified squamous epithelium made up primarily of keratinocytes and located at the skin surface. Disruption of the integrity of epidermis triggers a homeostatic response involving blood-derived elements and resident skin cell types that is designed to rapidly restore a functional epithelial lining over the wound site. This article is focused on the process of recruitment of keratinocytes from intact skin tissue at the proximal wound edges to participate in re-epithelialization.

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