Wound Healing Society

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Virgin Coconut Oil Promotes Wound Healing In Vitro With Potential For Controlled Release Applications
Cassandra Saitow, Heidi Johnson, Celine Breton, Joanna Pantazopoulus.
Simmons University, Boston, MA, USA.

Background - Coconut oil is popularly publicized as beneficial for skin health, due to the antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties conferred by the presence of flavonoids and antioxidants. However, direct effects of virgin coconut oil (VCO) on regulation of gene expression, and extracellular matrix production, during wound healing in vitro have not been fully characterized. Methods - To assess the effects of VCO on wound healing in vitro, we utilize the fibroblast scratch wound assay. Further, hydrophobicity of complete VCO suggests that localized delivery methods may potentially improve wound healing effects in vivo by extending the exposure period. Thus, we investigate regulated delivery of VCO spatiotemporally in vitro using Bombyx mori silk hydrogels. Results - Here, we show that VCO promotes rate of fibroblast migration by 35% in a scratch wound assay, significantly improving wound closure above vehicle-only controls. Conclusion - This system will facilitate the assessment of extracellular matrix production and organization, and sustained delivery of promigratory VCO, to promote further understanding of the effects of this naturally-derived compound on skin wound healing.

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