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A researcher in the skin laboratory using the Live Cyte

Skin and wounds

We collaborate with industry and the NHS, conducting research on skin biology, wound pathology, chronic wounds, skin ageing, diabetes, and the skin microbiome to develop new diagnostics, treatments, and anti-aging strategies for improved skin health and disease prevention.

Live cell analysis in the laboratories at the Daisy Building, Castle Hill Hospital

Why we are taking on skin and wounds research

Skin diseases account for a staggering 24% of the UK's burden of illness.** From common conditions like acne and eczema to severe cases such as psoriasis and skin cancer, these diseases can significantly impact patients' quality of life.

1 in 20 older people and 1 in 4 diabetics will develop a chronic wound in their lifetime. The prognosis is poor; Up to 80% of chronic wounds become infected, increasing the risk of lower limb amputation. Even more distressing, 70% of wound-related lower limb amputees die within 5 years.

Antimicrobial resistance further complicates wound care, demanding innovative solutions to replace broad-spectrum systemic antibiotics.

By focusing on this major area of unmet clinical need, we aim to revolutionise skin and wound care, improving the lives of countless patients and addressing the substantial costs associated with diagnosis, treatment, and management.

* Guest JF et al., BMJ Open. 2020 doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2020-045253

** Global Burden of Disease project

The NHS spends approximately £8.3billion per year on wound care
We bring together experts in skin biology, clinical excellence, research facilities, and industry partnerships to deliver patient benefits worldwide.

Laboratory bottles

What we want to achieve

Through collaboration with industry and the NHS, we are uncovering vital insights into skin biology and wound pathology.

Through our world-leading research and strategic industry partnerships, our work not only benefits patients locally, but also has a national and global reach.

Our areas of focus include:

  • Chronic wounds and pathological healing: By combining world-class research, cutting-edge translational wound models, and expertise in clinical trials, we aim to understand the causes of healing failure in chronic wounds, and develop new diagnostics and treatments.

  • Skin ageing and diabetes: We explore the shared mechanisms between skin ageing and diabetes, leveraging cutting-edge techniques like microbiopsy and non-invasive imaging. Our research informs the development of anti-aging strategies for improved skin health and disease protection.

  • Skin microbiome in health and disease: Investigating the skin microbiota and its interactions with our skin cells, we identify how bacteria is linked to poor outcomes, ranging from acne to chronic wounds. Our aim is to create effective interventions that combat disease.
Microbiology in the skin laboratory in the Daisy Building
Examining skin samples in the laboratory in the Daisy Building, Castle Hill Hospital

Our expertise in skin and wound research

Our expertise includes:

  • The Biomedical Institute for Multimorbidities provides a unique environment for translational wound studies combining world-class, multi-disciplinary discovery research with state of-the-art translational wound models and extensive expertise in wound clinical trials. 

  • A partnership with Hull University Hospitals NHS Trust, the Clinical Sciences Centre brings together scientists, academic and clinical researchers and healthcare professionals in skin research, with particular interests in surgical wounds and diabetic wound healing.

  • The Skin Research Centre brings together world-leading skin scientists, clinicians and advanced technology experts to improve skin health. With our comprehensive coverage of the entire spectrum of skin research, from scientific discovery through to manufacturing, the Centre are dedicated to making a lasting impact on skin health. 

Thank you to our funders

Desk with stethoscope and clinic tenometer

Explore our research groups contributing to skin and wound research