The primary problem of burn victims is infection. A protein called Human beta defensin 4 (HBD4) is said to combat infections in human body. This is present through out the body and helps it to fight against diseases. Now researchers have found that this could be produced by genetically modified skin cells.
In this connection, a team of researchers led by Dorothy Supp, a researcher and a wound healing specialist with Cincinnati Shriners Hospital for Children and the University of Cincinnati were involved with the development of such skin cells. Supp feels that in case of patients with burn injuries, these modified skin cells can be used for skin grafting.
Presently, such patients are treated with heavy doses of antibiotics to prevent infection. Though this helps, it also will result in the production of resistant strains of bacteria.
According to Supp modified skin cells are more successful in killing a specific type of bacteria than the ones that are not modified. The study about Human beta defensin 4 continues at Supp's lab and the team hopes to find a permanent remedy for burn victims in the long run.