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Acta Vulnologica 2015 September;13(3):171-76

language: English, Italian

Nutrition and skin healing, the role of nitrogen intake: is “from in” predominant on “from out”?

Corsetti G. 1, Pasini E. 2, Romano C. 1, Dioguardi F. S. 3

1 Department of Clinical and Experimental Sciences, Division of Human Anatomy and Physiopathology, University of Brescia, Brescia, Italy;
2 “S. Maugeri Foundation”, IRCCS, Cardiology Rehabilitative Division, Medical Centre of Lumezzane, Brescia, Italy;
3 Department of Clinical Sciences and Community Health, University of Milan, Milan, Italy


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Skin is an organ, and not merely a tissue, which accounts for 8% of body total weight. Protein content, predominantly collagen, in turn accounts for 50% of skin weight. Therefore, proteins contained into skin are in balance with protein metabolism of the whole body, and skin synthesizes new proteins or is dismantled for providing nitrogen containing substrates according to the needs of body metabolism. We have observed that diets containing poor amino acid quality, that is poor in essential amino acids content, compromise rapidly collagen density and affects collagen synthesis unbalancing collagen metabolism towards protein catabolism and impairin syntheses. Thus, we suggest to monitor plasma albumin levels as simple and widely available method for screening patients both at increased risk of spontaneous lesions, like bed sores, and/or failure of topical therapy and impaired wound healing due to under-evaluating the impact of protein malnutrition in those patients.

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