Light therapy helps burns heal faster by triggering growth protein
Light therapy can speed healing from burns, according to a study conducted by the University of Buffalo.
The research, published in Scientific reports, found that photobiomodulation therapy – a low-dose form of light therapy capable of relieving pain and promoting tissue healing and regeneration – accelerated burn healing and reduced inflammation in mice by activating TGF – endogenous beta 1, a protein that controls cell growth and division.
The findings could have an impact on therapeutic treatments for burns, which affect more than 6 million people worldwide each year, according to principal investigator Praveen Arany, DDS, PhD, assistant professor of oral biology at the UB School of Dental Medicine.
“Photobiomodulation therapy has been used effectively in the supportive care of cancer, age-related macular degeneration and Alzheimer’s disease,” says Arany. “A common feature of these conditions is the central role of inflammation. This work provides evidence for the ability of photobiomodulation-activated TGF-beta 1 to attenuate inflammation, while promoting tissue regeneration using an elegant transgenic burn model.
The study measured the effect of photobiomodulation on closing third degree burns over a nine-day period.
The treatment triggered TGF? Beta 1, which stimulated various types of cells involved in healing, including fibroblasts (the main connective tissue cells in the body that play an important role in tissue repair) and macrophages ( immune cells that reduce inflammation, cleanse cell debris and fight infections).
The researchers also developed a precise burn healing protocol for photobiomodulation treatments to ensure that additional thermal injuries are not inadvertently generated by the use of the laser.
The effectiveness of photobiomodulation in treating pain and stimulating healing has been documented in hundreds of clinical trials and thousands of academic papers. The therapy was recently recommended as the standard treatment for the relief of pain caused by oral mucositis associated with cancer (inflammation and lesions in the mouth) by the Multinational Association for Supportive Cancer Care.
Additional researchers on the study include Imran Khan, PhD, lead author and member of the scientific staff of the National Cancer Institute; Saeed Ur Rahman, PhD, assistant professor at Khyber Medical University, Peshawar; Elieza Tang, DDS, dentist; Karl Engel, Senior Clinical Field Specialist at Abbott; and Bradford Hall, PhD, Scientific Staff, and Ashok Kulkarni, PhD, Principal Investigator, both at the National Institute for Dental and Craniofacial Research.
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Material provided by University of Buffalo. Original written by Marcène Robinson. Note: Content can be changed for style and length.