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Topical Vanadate Alters Collagen Formation And Skin Elasticity During Wound Healing
Darren B. Abbas, M.D., Hendrik Lintel, BS, Duncan J D Mackay, MD, MBA, Michelle Griffin, MBChB, PhD, Nicholas Guardino, BS, Jason L. Guo, PhD, Amanda Spielman, BS, Michael T. Longaker, MD, MBA, Derrick C. Wan, MD.
Stanford University, Stanford, CA, USA.

PURPOSE: Vanadate is a potent competitive inhibitor of protein phosphatases which is thought to affect collagen deposition and reorganization in healing wounds. Affecting myofibroblast function and fibroblast orientation during the healing process, prior literature has demonstrated topical vanadate alters scar organization and improves the tensile strength of incisional wound scar tissue. In this study, we sought to further explore the effect of topical vanadate on the collagen organization and tensile strength of excisional wounds in a small animal model.
METHODS: Fifteen wild-type (C57BL/6J) mice were wounded with 5mm excisional wounds on their dorsal skin. The mice were divided equally into three treatment groups: untreated control, phosphate-buffered saline (PBS) treated wounds, and vanadate treated wounds (A). Treatments were administered daily via subcutaneous injection into 4 quadrants of the wound edge and the wound bed until wound closure. Upon closure, the wounds were harvested for histological analysis and skin elasticity testing via suction cutometer. Statistical analysis was done via one-way ANOVA. Statistical significance was achieved with p<0.05.
RESULTS: Histologically, the vanadate treated wounds appeared more similar in dermal thickness to the normal/control wounds than the PBS cohort at 7 days post-wounding and at wound closure 14 days post-wounding on H&E staining. Collagen density and ultrastructure at wound closure were also more similar between the control and vanadate cohorts compared to the PBS cohort (B). Suction cutometer demonstrated a significant difference in elasticity between the control and vanadate cohort (****p<0.0001) and the PBS and vanadate cohort (**p<0.01). However, no significant difference was noted in elasticity between the control and PBS cohort (C).
CONCLUSION: Topical vanadate alters collagen formation during excisional wound healing that grossly appears similar to the normal wound healing process but physiologically has improved elasticity.


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