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Corneal epithelial wound healing

By P. D. Dale, J. A. Sherratt and P. K. Maini


We propose a reaction-diffusion model of the mechanisms involved in the healing of corneal surface wounds. The model focuses on the stimulus for increased mitotic and migratory activity, specifically the role of epidermal growth factor. We determine an analytic approximation for the speed of travelling wave solutions of the model in terms of the parameters and verify the results numerically. By comparing the predicted speed with experimentally measured healing rates, we conclude that serum-derived factors can alone account for the overall features of the healing process, but that the supply of growth factors by the tear film, in the absence of serum-derived factors, is not sufficient to give the observed healing rate. Numerical solutions of the model equations also confirm the importance of both migration and mitosis for effective wound healing. By modifying the model, we obtain an analytic prediction for the healing rate of corneal surface wounds when epidermal growth factor is applied topically to the wound

Topics: Biology and other natural sciences
Year: 1995
DOI identifier: 10.1142/S021833909500085X
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