Light therapy helps burn burns heal faster by triggering growth proteins
Light therapy can speed up burn healing, according to a study conducted by the University at Buffalo.
The research published in Scientific reports, found that photobiomodulation therapy – a form of low-dose light therapy that is able to relieve pain and promote healing and tissue regeneration – accelerates burn recovery and reduces inflammation in mice by releasing endogenous TGF-beta 1 activates a protein that controls cells’ growth and division.
The results could have implications for therapeutic management of burn injuries that affect more than 6 million people worldwide each year, says Praveen Arany, DDS, PhD, assistant professor of oral biology at the UB School of Dental Medicine.
“Photobiomodulation therapy has been used effectively in supportive cancer management, age-related macular degeneration, and Alzheimer’s disease,” says Arany. “A common feature of these diseases is the central role of inflammation. This work provides evidence of the ability of photobiomodulation-activated TGF-beta 1 to alleviate inflammation while promoting tissue regeneration using an elegant, transgenic model of burn wounds.”
The study measured the effect of photobiomodulation on third-degree burn closure over a period of nine days.
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 inhibit inflammation, cleanse cell debris, and fight infection) .
Researchers also developed a precise burn healing protocol for photobiomodulation treatments to ensure that laser application does not inadvertently create additional thermal injuries.
The effectiveness of photobiomodulation in treating pain and stimulating healing has been documented in hundreds of clinical studies and thousands of scientific papers. The therapy was recently recommended by the Multinational Association for Supportive Care in Cancer as the standard treatment for pain relief in cancer-associated oral mucositis (inflammation and lesions in the mouth).
Other researchers on the study include Imran Khan, PhD, lead author and research fellow at 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, Research Associate, and Ashok Kulkarni, PhD, Principal Investigator, both at the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research.
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