Reduced FOXO1 Expression Accelerates Skin Wound Healing and Attenuates Scarring

Ryoichi Mori, Katsuya Tanaka, Maiko de Kerckhove, Momoko Okamoto, Kazuya Kashiyama, Katsumi Tanaka, Sangeun Kim, Takuya Kawata, Toshimitsu Komatsu, Seongjoon Park, Kazuya Ikematsu, Akiyoshi Hirano, Paul Martin, Isao Shimokawa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

54 Citations (Scopus)


The forkhead box O (FOXO) family has been extensively investigated in aging and metabolism, but its role in tissue-repair processes remains largely unknown. Herein, we clarify the molecular aspect of the FOXO family in skin wound healing. We demonstrated that Foxo1 and Foxo3a were both up-regulated during murine skin wound healing. Partial knockout of Foxo1 in Foxo1(+/-) mice throughout the body led to accelerated skin wound healing with enhanced keratinocyte migration, reduced granulation tissue formation, and decreased collagen density, accompanied by an attenuated inflammatory response, but we observed no wound phenotype in Foxo3a(-/-) mice. Fibroblast growth factor 2, adiponectin, and notch1 genes were significantly increased at wound sites in Foxo1(+/-) mice, along with markedly altered extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 and AKT phosphorylation. Similarly, transient knockdown of Foxo1 at the wound site by local delivery of antisense oligodeoxynucleotides enhanced skin wound healing. The link between FOXO1 and scarring extends to patients, in particular keloid scars, where we see FOXO1 expression markedly increased in fibroblasts and inflammatory cells within the otherwise normal dermis. This occurs in the immediate vicinity of the keloid by comparison to the center of the mature keloid, indicating that FOXO1 is associated with the overgrowth of this fibrotic response into adjacent normal skin. Overall, our data indicate that molecular targeting of FOXO1 may improve the quality of healing and reduce pathological scarring.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2465-79
Number of pages15
JournalAmerican Journal of Pathology
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2014

Bibliographical note

Copyright © 2014 American Society for Investigative Pathology. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


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