Chalmers Conferences, 9th European Conference on Mathematical and Theoretical Biology

A morphoelastic model of dermal wound healing
Lucie Bowden

Last modified: 2014-03-31


Initially, residual tension in the skin causes a wound to retract. Following immediate retraction, the wound heals by deposition of new tissue and fibroblast driven contraction. We propose a morphoelastic model for investigating suitable growth laws and the contraction mechanism driving wound healing. The dermis surrounding the wound is modelled as an annulus subject to axisymmetric deformations. These deformations are modelled through the theory of finite elasticity. Growth of dermal tissue is decribed using the theory of morphoelasticity. We estimate a theoretical value for the residual stress of healthy, unwounded skin and use this to define mechanically induced growth of the tissue. Through analysis of possible growth laws we conclude that, for normal healing, the system must undergo radial growth and circumferential resorption. Using this restraint we compare two hypotheses for wound contraction.


wound healing, morphoelasticity, finite elasticity