Nitric oxide: a newly discovered function on wound healing

Authors: Jian-dong LUO, Alex F CHEN


Wound healing impairment represents a particularly challenging clinical problem
to which no efficacious treatment regimens currently exist. The factors ensuring
appropriate intercellular communication during wound repair are not completely
understood. Although protein-type mediators are well-established players in this
process, emerging evidence from both animal and human studies indicates that
nitric oxide (NO) plays a key role in wound repair. The beneficial effects of NO on
wound repair may be attributed to its functional influences on angiogenesis,
inflammation, cell proliferation, matrix deposition, and remodeling. Recent findings
from in vitro and in vivo studies of NO on wound repair are summarized in
this review. The unveiled novel mechanisms support the use of NO-containing
agents and/or NO synthase gene therapy as new therapeutic regimens for impaired
wound healing.

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