Parallels between vertebrate cardiac and cutaneous wound healing and regeneration

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The cellular events that contribute to tissue healing of non-sterile wounds to the skin and ischaemic injury to internal organs such as the heart share remarkable similarities despite the differences between these injury types and organs. In adult vertebrates, both injuries are characterised by a complex series of overlapping events involving multiple different cell types and cellular interactions. In adult mammals both tissue-healing processes ultimately lead to the permanent formation of a fibrotic, collagenous scar, which can have varying effects on tissue function depending on the site and magnitude of damage. Extensive scarring in the heart as a result of a severe myocardial infarction contributes to ventricular dysfunction and the progression of heart failure. Some vertebrates such as adult zebrafish, however, retain a more embryonic capacity for scar-free tissue regeneration in many tissues including the skin and heart. In this review, the similarities and differences between these different types of wound healing are discussed, with special attention on recent advances in regenerative, non-scarring vertebrate models such as the zebrafish.
Original languageEnglish
Article number21
Number of pages9
Journalnpj Regenerative Medicine
Publication statusPublished - 7 Nov 2018


  • Zebrafish
  • Regeneration
  • Cardiac regeneration
  • Wound Healing
  • SKIN


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