Plantar Skin Exhibits Altered Physiology, Constitutive Activation of Wound-Associated Phenotypes, and Inherently Delayed Healing

Christiane Fuchs, Katherine J. Stalnaker, Clifton L. Dalgard, Gauthaman Sukumar, Daniel Hupalo, Jonathan M. Dreyfuss, Hui Pan, Ying Wang, Linh Pham, Xunwei Wu, Ivan Jozic, R. Rox Anderson, Sunghun Cho, Jon H. Meyerle, Joshua Tam*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Wound research has typically been performed without regard for where the wounds are located on the body, despite well-known heterogeneities in physical and biological properties between different skin areas. The skin covering the palms and soles is highly specialized, and plantar ulcers are one of the most challenging and costly wound types to manage. Using primarily the porcine model, we show that plantar skin is molecularly and functionally more distinct from nonplantar skin than previously recognized, with unique gene and protein expression profiles, broad alterations in cellular functions, constitutive activation of many wound-associated phenotypes, and inherently delayed healing. This unusual physiology is likely to play a significant but underappreciated role in the pathogenesis of plantar ulcers as well as the last 25+ years of futility in therapy development efforts. By revealing this critical yet unrecognized pitfall, we hope to contribute to the development of more effective therapies for these devastating nonhealing wounds.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Investigative Dermatology
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2024
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Healing
  • Plantar
  • Porcine
  • Volar
  • Wound

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