Your Genes May Affect How You’ll Heal If Wounded

Your genes may have a big impact on bacteria in your wounds and how quickly you heal, new research shows.

The researchers said their findings could help improve wound treatment.

Chronic wounds — ones that don’t show signs of healing within three weeks — can be costly, and bacterial infection slows the process.

A range of bacterial species are present in chronic wounds, but it’s not clear why certain ones are found in some wound infections and not others.

In order to learn more, the researchers investigated the link between genes and bacteria diversity in chronic wounds.

They linked variations in two key genes — TLN2 and ZNF521 — to both the number of bacteria in wounds and the abundance of harmful ones, primarily Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Staphylococcus epidermidis.

Pseudomonas-infected wounds had fewer species of bacteria — and wounds with fewer species were slower to heal, the investigators found.

The results suggest that genetic variation influences the types of bacteria that infect wounds as well as the healing process.

The study by Caleb Phillips, an assistant professor of biology at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, and colleagues was published online June 18 in the journal PLOS Pathogens.

The authors described their study as the first to identify how genes influence wound bacteria and healing.

“This study demonstrates the ability to find variants in people’s genomes that explain differences in the microorganisms that infect their wounds. Such information is expected to guide new understanding about the mechanisms of infection and healing, and the establishment of predictive biomarkers that improve patient care,” the authors said in a journal news release.

Source: HealthDay

Today’s Comic

Egg Yolk: An Unlikely Aid for Wound Healing

Egg yolk is high in nutrients that can enhance wound healing, such as zinc and protein.

In the past, eggs have gotten a bad rap, and many people avoid the yolk specifically due to warnings of high contents of cholesterol. However, despite decades of back-and-forth arguments over whether this food is good or bad for people’s health, the medical community has largely come to an agreement: When eaten in moderation, egg yolk provides great health benefits, and recent studies have shown that it can even improve wound healing.

As the Mayo Clinic reports, one large egg contains around 186 milligrams of cholesterol all within the yolk. However, eating eggs does not cause a substantial negative effect on blood cholesterol compared to trans and saturated fats. With that in mind, people of good health should eat no more than seven eggs per week to maintain good heart health (though those with diabetes should consult a clinician before including eggs in their diet).

When it comes to wound healing, the great benefits of egg yolk come largely from its high content of zinc, as the North Carolina Egg Association points out. This element not only assists in the production of new tissue but also strengthens the immune system, which can help defend the body against infection. Egg yolk is also abundant in protein, which is essential to cellular development and the creation of new tissue.

Egg yolk as a topical oil

Eating eggs isn’t the only way to obtain these healing benefits. A study published in the Iranian Red Crescent Medical Journal examined the effect of egg yolk oil when applied to healing wounds on participants recovering from third degree burns. The results showed that the application of yolk oil on burns led to faster healing time and less scarring. While further studies to demonstrate just how this oil contributes to healing are still necessary, the findings suggest that yolk oil may someday be a common part of wound care.

Advanced Tissue is the nation’s leader in delivering specialized wound care supplies to patients, delivering to both homes and long-term care facilities.

Source: Advanced Tissue