A complex series of events involving inflammation, cell migration and proliferation, ECM stabilisation and remodelling, neovascularisation and apoptosis are crucial to the tissue response to injury. Wound healing involves the dynamic interactions of multiple cells types with components of the extracellular matrix (ECM) and growth factors. Impaired wound healing as a consequence of aging, injury or disease may lead to serious disabilities and poor quality of life. Abnormal wound healing may also lead to inflammatory and fibrotic conditions (such as renal and pulmonary fibrosis). Therefore identification of the molecular events underlying wound repair is essential to develop new effective treatments in support to patients and the wound care sector.
Recent advances in the understating of the physiological functions of tissue transglutaminase a multi functional protein cross-linking enzyme which stabilises tissues have demonstrated that its biological activities interrelate with wound healing phases at multiple levels. This review describes our view of the function of tissue transglutaminase in wound repair under normal and pathological situations and highlights its potential as a strategic therapeutic target in the development of new treatments to improve wound healing and prevent scarring.