Human skin, when injured, is capable of repairing itself to restore tissue integrity and heal the wound. This wound healing involves 4 overlapping process, beginning immediately after an injury:
Hemostasis The body works to stop the bleeding and start the healing process by activating a coagulation cascade. A fibrin blood clot forms that plugs severed blood vessels and fills in tissue discontinuity at the wound site.
Inflammation During this phase, white blood cells and macrophages enter the wound to destroy bacteria and remove debris. The blood clot creates a fibrin scaffold that serves as a protective, provisional extracellular matrix (ECM) containing cytokines and growth factors (interleukin, transforming growth factor-β, platelet-derived growth factor, and vascular endothelial growth factor, among others) that facilitate tissue repair.
Proliferation The blood clot recruits endothelial cells and fibroblasts to synthesize a permanent ECM. The focus is filling and covering the wound.
Remodeling The blood clot dries out and becomes a protective scab. Under the scab, tissue remodeling takes place undisturbed. The fibrin is replaced by fibronectin and hyaluronan, and the scab falls off to reveal a collagenous scar.
Chronic wounds—including diabetic ulcers, venous and arterial ulcers, and pressure ulcers—often don’t heal or heal slowly because an underlying defect is impeding blood flow to the wound site. This lack of blood prevents the body from going through its natural wound healing process.
ActiGraft is the first wound care product that enables health care providers to produce—in real time—in vitro blood clots from a patient’s whole blood. This innovative solution brings the patient’s blood to the wound site to initiate and promote the healing process. Once applied, the blood clot serves as the protective covering, biologic fibrin scaffold, and wound microenvironment to promote the natural wound healing processes of the body.