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Dermatology Research and Practice
Volume 2010, Article ID 405262, 10 pages
Review Article

Therapeutic Improvement of Scarring: Mechanisms of Scarless and Scar-Forming Healing and Approaches to the Discovery of New Treatments

Renovo Group plc, Core Technology Facility, 48 Grafton Street, Manchester M13 9XX , UK

Received 15 March 2010; Accepted 17 June 2010

Academic Editor: Hayes B. Gladstone

Copyright © 2010 Nick L. Occleston et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Scarring in the skin after trauma, surgery, burn or sports injury is a major medical problem, often resulting in loss of function, restriction of tissue movement and adverse psychological effects. Whilst various studies have utilised a range of model systems that have increased our understanding of the pathways and processes underlying scar formation, they have typically not translated to the development of effective therapeutic approaches for scar management. Existing treatments are unreliable and unpredictable and there are no prescription drugs for the prevention or treatment of dermal scarring. As a consequence, scar improvement still remains an area of clear medical need. Here we describe the basic science of scar-free and scar-forming healing, the utility of pre-clinical model systems, their translation to humans, and our pioneering approach to the discovery and development of therapeutic approaches for the prophylactic improvement of scarring in man