The Problem of Hard-to-Heal Wounds
When we get hurt and have a wound, our bodies work hard to heal it. But sometimes, wounds can be hard to heal and it takes a long time for them to get better.
These kinds of wounds are a big problem for a lot of people. Doctors only have two medicines they can use to help heal these wounds.
But now, scientists at Uppsala University in Sweden have found something new that can help.
The Bacteria that Can Help Wounds Heal
The scientists used a kind of bacteria, called lactic acid bacteria, in their study. Bacteria are very tiny living things that can be good or bad.
The kind they used is good. They changed this bacteria a little bit so it would make a substance called CXCL12.
Then they put the bacteria on wounds. In earlier studies, they found that doing this can make wounds heal faster. In their new study, they tested it on people for the first time.
How the Study Worked
In the study, they wanted to see if using this bacteria on wounds is safe and if it helps wounds heal. They tested it on 36 healthy people.
These people had 240 wounds altogether that the scientists made in a safe way.
They put the bacteria, or a harmless salt solution or a placebo (which doesn’t have any medicine in it) on the wounds. Then they watched to see how the wounds healed.
What They Found Out
The good news is that the bacteria was safe for people and didn’t cause any problems. They also found that it helped wounds heal.
Wounds treated with the bacteria healed more and healed faster than the ones treated with the salt solution or the placebo.
In fact, the wounds treated with the bacteria healed about 6 to 10 days faster on average. They also found more CXCL12 and better blood flow in the wounds that were treated with the bacteria.
What This Means for Wound Healing
This is the first time that bacteria that have been changed to make a human protein have been shown to help wounds heal faster in a study on people.
The lead scientist, Professor Mia Phillipson, says that this could be really helpful for people whose diseases make it harder for wounds to heal.
The next step is to keep testing the bacteria on wounds that are hard to heal. If it keeps working well, it could become a new medicine for three kinds of wounds.
The scientists are also excited because this could be a new way to make medicines.
They are already working on another medicine using bacteria to help treat inflammation in people with cancer. In the future, they might be able to use this method to treat lung diseases too.
A Bit More About the Study
The study was called SITU-SAFE. It was a phase 1 study, which means it was the first time the treatment was tested on people. It was done in a very careful way to make sure it was safe.
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The study was done at Uppsala University Hospital in Sweden. The results were published in a journal called eClinicalMedicine.
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