Cutaneous wound repair is a highly coordinated cascade of cellular responses to injury which restores the epidermal integrity and its barrier functions. Even under optimal healing conditions, normal wound repair of adult human skin is imperfect and delayed healing and scarring are frequent occurrences. Dysregulated wound healing is a major concern for global healthcare, and, given the rise in diabetic and aging populations, this medicoeconomic disease burden will continue to rise. Therapies to reliably improve nonhealing wounds and reduce scarring are currently unavailable. Mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) have emerged as a powerful technique to improve skin wound healing. Their differentiation potential, ease of harvest, low immunogenicity, and integral role in native wound healing physiology make MSCs an attractive therapeutic remedy. MSCs promote cell migration, angiogenesis, epithelialization, and granulation tissue formation, which result in accelerated wound closure. MSCs encourage a regenerative, rather than fibrotic, wound healing microenvironment. Recent translational research efforts using modern bioengineering approaches have made progress in creating novel techniques for stromal cell delivery into healing wounds. This paper discusses experimental applications of various stromal cells to promote wound healing and discusses the novel methods used to increase MSC delivery and efficacy.
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