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Cigarette smoke a culprit in poor healing and increased scarring

Cigarette smoke, whether first- or second-hand, complicates the careful cellular choreography of wound healing, according to a paper by University of California, Riverside researchers that was included in the 2004 Press Book of the 44th Annual Meeting of the American Society For Cell Biology (ASCB).

Cigarette smoke delays the formation of healing tissue and sets the stage for increased scarring at the edges of a wound according to the paper titled Smoke Gets In Your Wounds, one of 15 from a field of more than 1,200 submissions to the ASCB Annual Meeting Press Book.

UCR Professor of Cell Biology and Neuroscience Manuela Martins-Green will present her findings Sunday, Dec. 5, at the annual meeting, which is scheduled to begin Saturday, Dec. 4, in Washington D.C. and will run through Wednesday, Dec. 8.

The press book is the ASCB's major effort to open cell biology research to a wider audience by helping science journalists discover the meeting's most exciting and significant new work, according to an association statement.

Martins-Green, and student Lina Wong are part of a team of researchers who have published several papers on the subject. Similar findings were announced in the journals BMC Cell Biology in April and Wound Repair and Regeneration in August. Those papers also examined the role of fibroblasts, the cells that play a major role in wound healing.

Wound healing is a highly choreographed, biological drama of clotting, inflammation, cell proliferation and tissue remodeling. It features an exotic cast of clotting and growth factors, specialized cells and structural proteins, each of which must time their entrance and exit perfectly. Nothing messes up this timing like cigarette smoke. Clinical studies have consistently shown that individuals exposed to cigarette smoke whether "first-" or "second-hand" heal poorly and are more likely to develop scarring and
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Contact: Ricardo Duran
ricardo.duran@ucr.edu
951-827-5893
University of California - Riverside
6-Dec-2004


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