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Modelling the interaction of keratinocytes and fibroblasts during normal and abnormal wound healing processes

Menon, Shakti N., Flegg, Jennifer, McCue, Scott W., Schugart, Richard C., Dawson, Rebecca A., & McElwain, Sean (2012) Modelling the interaction of keratinocytes and fibroblasts during normal and abnormal wound healing processes. Proceedings of the Royal Society B, 279, pp. 3329-3338.

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Abstract

The crosstalk between fibroblasts and keratinocytes is a vital component of the wound healing process, and involves the activity of a number of growth factors and cytokines. In this work, we develop a mathematical model of this crosstalk in order to elucidate the effects of these interactions on the regeneration of collagen in a wound that heals by second intention. We consider the role of four components that strongly affect this process: transforming growth factor-beta, platelet-derived growth factor, interleukin-1 and keratinocyte growth factor. The impact of this network of interactions on the degradation of an initial fibrin clot, as well as its subsequent replacement by a matrix that is mainly comprised of collagen, is described through an eight-component system of nonlinear partial differential equations. Numerical results, obtained in a two-dimensional domain, highlight key aspects of this multifarious process such as reepithelialisation. The model is shown to reproduce many of the important features of normal wound healing. In addition, we use the model to simulate the treatment of two pathological cases: chronic hypoxia, which can lead to chronic wounds; and prolonged inflammation, which has been shown to lead to hypertrophic scarring. We find that our model predictions are qualitatively in agreement with previously reported observations, and provide an alternative pathway for gaining insight into this complex biological process.

Impact and interest:

4 citations in Scopus
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3 citations in Web of Science®

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64 since deposited on 09 May 2012
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ID Code: 49750
Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: mathematical biology, wound healing, fibroblast-keratinocyte crosstalk, prolonged inflammation, chronic hypoxia
DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2012.0319
ISSN: 0962-8452
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MATHEMATICAL SCIENCES (010000) > APPLIED MATHEMATICS (010200) > Biological Mathematics (010202)
Divisions: Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Mathematical Sciences
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Science & Engineering Faculty
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2012 The Royal Society
Deposited On: 10 May 2012 08:55
Last Modified: 20 Jul 2012 11:18

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