Effect of red and near-infrared wavelengths on low-level laser (light) therapy-induced healing of partial-thickness dermal abrasion in mice

Lasers Med Sci. 2014 Jan;29(1):257-65. doi: 10.1007/s10103-013-1319-0. Epub 2013 Apr 26.


Low-level laser (light) therapy (LLLT) promotes wound healing, reduces pain and inflammation, and prevents tissue death. Studies have explored the effects of various radiant exposures on the effect of LLLT; however, studies of wavelength dependency in in vivo models are less common. In the present study, the healing effects of LLLT mediated by different wavelengths of light in the red and near-infrared (NIR) wavelength regions (635, 730, 810, and 980 nm) delivered at constant fluence (4 J/cm(2)) and fluence rate (10 mW/cm(2)) were evaluated in a mouse model of partial-thickness dermal abrasion. Wavelengths of 635 and 810 nm were found to be effective in promoting the healing of dermal abrasions. However, treatment using 730- and 980-nm wavelengths showed no sign of stimulated healing. Healing was maximally augmented in mice treated with an 810-nm wavelength, as evidenced by significant wound area reduction (p < 0.05), enhanced collagen accumulation, and complete re-epithelialization as compared to other wavelengths and non-illuminated controls. Significant acceleration of re-epithelialization and cellular proliferation revealed by immunofluorescence staining for cytokeratin-14 and proliferating cell nuclear antigen (p < 0.05) was evident in the 810-nm wavelength compared with other groups. Photobiomodulation mediated by red (635 nm) and NIR (810 nm) light suggests that the biological response of the wound tissue depends on the wavelength employed. The effectiveness of 810-nm wavelength agrees with previous publications and, together with the partial effectiveness of 635 nm and the ineffectiveness of 730 and 980 nm wavelengths, can be explained by the absorption spectrum of cytochrome c oxidase, the candidate mitochondrial chromophore in LLLT.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Proliferation / radiation effects
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Infrared Rays / therapeutic use
  • Keratin-14 / metabolism
  • Low-Level Light Therapy / methods*
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Optical Phenomena
  • Proliferating Cell Nuclear Antigen / metabolism
  • Re-Epithelialization / radiation effects
  • Skin / injuries*
  • Skin / metabolism
  • Skin / radiation effects*
  • Wound Healing / physiology
  • Wound Healing / radiation effects*


  • Keratin-14
  • Proliferating Cell Nuclear Antigen