Patch repair of deep wounds by mobilized fascia

Nature. 2019 Dec;576(7786):287-292. doi: 10.1038/s41586-019-1794-y. Epub 2019 Nov 27.


Mammals form scars to quickly seal wounds and ensure survival by an incompletely understood mechanism1-5. Here we show that skin scars originate from prefabricated matrix in the subcutaneous fascia. Fate mapping and live imaging revealed that fascia fibroblasts rise to the skin surface after wounding, dragging their surrounding extracellular jelly-like matrix, including embedded blood vessels, macrophages and peripheral nerves, to form the provisional matrix. Genetic ablation of fascia fibroblasts prevented matrix from homing into wounds and resulted in defective scars, whereas placing an impermeable film beneath the skin-preventing fascia fibroblasts from migrating upwards-led to chronic open wounds. Thus, fascia contains a specialized prefabricated kit of sentry fibroblasts, embedded within a movable sealant, that preassemble together diverse cell types and matrix components needed to heal wounds. Our findings suggest that chronic and excessive skin wounds may be attributed to the mobility of the fascia matrix.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biomarkers / analysis
  • Cell Movement
  • Fascia / pathology*
  • Fascia / transplantation
  • Fibroblasts
  • Keloid
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Wound Healing*


  • Biomarkers