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Therapeutic Silencing of p120 in Fascia Fibroblasts Ameliorates Tissue Repair

Published:November 25, 2022DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jid.2022.10.018
      Deep skin wounds rapidly heal by mobilizing extracellular matrix and cells from the fascia, deep beneath the dermal layer of the skin, to form scars. Despite wounds being an extensively studied area and an unmet clinical need, the biochemistry driving this patch-like repair remains obscure. Lacking also are efficacious therapeutic means to modulate scar formation in vivo. In this study, we identify a central role for p120 in mediating fascia mobilization and wound repair. Injury triggers p120 expression, largely within engrailed-1 lineage-positive fibroblasts of the fascia that exhibit a supracellular organization. Using adeno-associated virus‒mediated gene silencing, we show that p120 establishes the supracellular organization of fascia engrailed-1 lineage-positive fibroblasts, without which fascia mobilization is impaired. Gene silencing of p120 in fascia fibroblasts disentangles their supracellular organization, reducing the transfer of fascial cells and extracellular matrix into wounds and augmenting wound healing. Our findings place p120 as essential for fascia mobilization, opening, to our knowledge, a previously unreported therapeutic avenue for targeted intervention in the treatment of a variety of skin scar conditions.

      Abbreviations:

      AAV (adeno-associated virus), ECM (extracellular matrix), PIV (particle image velocimetry), shRNA (short hairpin RNA)
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