Inflammatory microenvironment and tumor necrosis factor alpha as modulators of periostin and CCN2 expression in human non-healing skin wounds and dermal fibroblasts

Christopher G. Elliott, Thomas L. Forbes, Andrew Leask, Douglas W. Hamilton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations

Abstract

Non-healing skin wounds remain a significant clinical burden, and in recent years, the regulatory role of matricellular proteins in skin healing has received significant attention. Periostin and CCN2 are both upregulated at day 3 post-wounding in murine skin, where they regulate aspects of the proliferative phase of repair including mesenchymal cell infiltration and myofibroblast differentiation. In this study, we examined 1) the wound phenotype and expression patterns of periostin and CCN2 in non-healing skin wounds in humans and 2) the regulation of their expression in wound fibroblasts by tumor necrosis factor α (TNFα) and transforming growth factor-β1 (TGF-β1). Chronic skin wounds had a pro-inflammatory phenotype, characterized by macrophage infiltration, TNFα immunoreactivity, and neutrophil infiltration. Periostin, but not CCN2, was significantly suppressed in non-healing wound edge tissue at the mRNA and protein level compared with non-involved skin. In vitro, human wound edge fibroblasts populations were still able to proliferate and contract collagen gels. Compared to cells from non-involved skin, periostin and α-SMA mRNA levels increased significantly in the presence of TGF-β1 in wound cells and were significantly decreased by TNFα, but not those of Col1A2 or CCN2. In the presence of both TGF-β1 and TNFα, periostin and α-SMA mRNA levels were significantly reduced compared to TGF-β1 treated wound cells. Effects of TGF-β1 and TNFα on gene expression were also more pronounced in wound edge cells compared to non-involved fibroblasts. We conclude that variations in the expression of periostin and CCN2, are related to an inflammatory microenvironment and the presence of TNFα in human chronic wounds.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)71-84
Number of pages14
JournalMatrix Biology
Volume43
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2015
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • CCN2
  • Dermal fibroblasts
  • Matricellular
  • Non-healing wound
  • Periostin
  • Tumor necrosis factor α

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