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Review ARTICLE Provisionally accepted The full-text will be published soon. Notify me

Front. Physiol. | doi: 10.3389/fphys.2019.01101

Direct and indirect roles of macrophages in hypertrophic scar formation

 Feng L. Yuan1, Yi Feng2* and Zi L. Sun3
  • 1Department of Orthopaedics and Central Laboratory, The Third Hospital Affiliated to Nantong University, China
  • 2Medical College, Yangzhou University, China
  • 3Wuxi Clinical Medicine School of Integrated Chinese and Western Medicine, Nanjing University of Chinese Medicine, China

Hypertrophic scars are pathological scars that result from abnormal responses to trauma, and could cause serious functional and cosmetic disability. To date, no optimal treatment method has been established. A variety of cell types are involved in hypertrophic scar formation after wound healing, but the underlying molecular mechanisms and cellular origins of hypertrophic scars are not fully understood. Macrophages are major effector cells in the immune response after tissue injury that orchestrates the process of wound healing. Depending on the local microenvironment, macrophages undergo marked phenotypic and functional changes at different stages during scar pathogenesis. This review intends to summarize the direct and indirect roles of macrophages during hypertrophic scar formation. The in vivo depletion of macrophages or blocking their signaling reduces scar formation in experimental models, thereby establishing macrophages as positive regulatory cells in the skin scar formation. In the future, a significant amount of attention should be given to molecular and cellular mechanisms that cause the phenotypic switch of wound macrophages, which may provide novel therapeutic targets for hypertrophic scars.

Keywords: Hypertrophic scars, Macrophages, Wound Healing, myofibroblas, differentiation

Received: 26 Feb 2019; Accepted: 08 Aug 2019.

Copyright: © 2019 Yuan, Feng and Sun. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Dr. Yi Feng, Medical College, Yangzhou University, Yangzhou, China,