Quantitation of cytokine levels in skin graft donor site wound fluid

L. S. Grayson, J. F. Hansbrough, R. L. Zapata-Sirvent, C. A. Dore, J. L. Morgan, M. A. Nicolson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

66 Scopus citations


We quantified endogenous levels of multiple cytokines in skin graft donor site wounds in patients with small to moderate-sixed burn injuries. Thirteen patients aged 11 months to 61 years with mean TBSA burn of 4 ± 1 per cent underwent placement of occlusive wound dressings on partial skin thickness donor site wounds. Fluid was aspirated from beneath the dressing on postoperative day 1 and every subsequent 24 h until no further fluid could be obtained. Interleukin-1 alpha (IL-1) and tumour necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha) levels were determined by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Epidermal growth factor (EGF), basic-fibroblast growth factor (bFGF), and platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) were measured by an enzyme immunoassay (EIA). We found substantial levels of EGF and TNF-alpha in the donor site wound fluid in all 13 patients; detectable levels of bFGF in five patients; and elevated levels of IL-1 in three patients. There were no detectable levels of these cytokines in normal human serum. In contrast, there were no measurable levels of PDGF in any patient's wound fluid; the mean level in serum was 1.5 ng/ml ± 0.2 s.e.m. Studies of cytokines in the normal wound healing environment may help in the design of future therapies to augment wound healing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)401-405
Number of pages5
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 1993
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Emergency Medicine
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine


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