Following skin wounding, the healing outcome can be: regeneration, repair with normal scar tissue, repair with hypertrophic scar tissue or the formation of keloids. The role of chemical factors in wound healing has been extensively explored, and while there is evidence suggesting the role of mechanical forces, its influence is much less well defined. Here, we provide a brief review on the recent progress of the role of mechanical force in skin wound healing by comparing laboratory mice, African spiny mice, fetal wound healing and adult scar keloid formation. A comparison across different species may provide insight into key regulators. Interestingly, some findings suggest tension can induce an immune response, and this provides a new link between mechanical and chemical forces. Clinically, manipulating skin tension has been demonstrated to be effective for scar prevention and treatment, but not for tissue regeneration. Utilising this knowledge, specialists may modulate regulatory factors and develop therapeutic strategies to reduce scar formation and promote regeneration.
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