Natural and synthetic polymers for wounds and burns dressing


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Abstract

Graphical abstractIn the last years, health care professionals faced with an increasing number of patients suffering from wounds and burns difficult to treat and heal. During the wound healing process, the dressing protects the injury and contributes to the recovery of dermal and epidermal tissues. Because their biocompatibility, biodegradability and similarity to macromolecules recognized by the human body, some natural polymers such as polysaccharides (alginates, chitin, chitosan, heparin, chondroitin), proteoglycans and proteins (collagen, gelatin, fibrin, keratin, silk fibroin, eggshell membrane) are extensively used in wounds and burns management. Obtained by electrospinning technique, some synthetic polymers like biomimetic extracellular matrix micro/nanoscale fibers based on polyglycolic acid, polylactic acid, polyacrylic acid, poly-ε-caprolactone, polyvinylpyrrolidone, polyvinyl alcohol, polyethylene glycol, exhibit in vivo and in vitro wound healing properties and enhance re-epithelialization. They provide an optimal microenvironment for cell proliferation, migration and differentiation, due to their biocompatibility, biodegradability, peculiar structure and good mechanical properties. Thus, synthetic polymers are used also in regenerative medicine for cartilage, bone, vascular, nerve and ligament repair and restoration. Biocompatible with fibroblasts and keratinocytes, tissue engineered skin is indicated for regeneration and remodeling of human epidermis and wound healing improving the treatment of severe skin defects or partial-thickness burn injuries.

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