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Int J Biol Sci 2015; 11(7):845-859. doi:10.7150/ijbs.11921

Research Paper

bFGF Promotes the Migration of Human Dermal Fibroblasts under Diabetic Conditions through Reactive Oxygen Species Production via the PI3K/Akt-Rac1- JNK Pathways

Hongxue Shi1, Yi Cheng1, Jingjing Ye1, Pingtao Cai1, Jinjing Zhang1, Rui Li 1, Ying Yang1, Zhouguang Wang1, Hongyu Zhang1, Cai Lin2, Xianghong Lu3, Liping Jiang1, Aiping Hu1, Xinbo Zhu1, Qiqiang Zeng2, Xiaobing Fu4, Xiaokun Li1✉, Jian Xiao1✉

1. School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Key Laboratory of Biotechnology and Pharmaceutical Engineering, Wenzhou Medical University, Wenzhou, 325035 China
2. The First Affiliate Hospital, Wenzhou Medical University, Wenzhou, 325035, China
3. Translation Medicine Research Center, Lishui People's Hospital, Wenzhou Medical University, Lishui, 323000, China
4. Wound Healing and Cell Biology Laboratory, Institute of Basic Medical Science, Chinese PLA General Hospital, Beijing, PR China


Fibroblasts play a pivotal role in the process of cutaneous wound repair, whereas their migratory ability under diabetic conditions is markedly reduced. In this study, we investigated the effect of basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) on human dermal fibroblast migration in a high-glucose environment. bFGF significantly increased dermal fibroblast migration by increasing the percentage of fibroblasts with a high polarity index and reorganizing F-actin. A significant increase in intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) was observed in dermal fibroblasts under diabetic conditions following bFGF treatment. The blockage of bFGF-induced ROS production by either the ROS scavenger N-acetyl-L-cysteine (NAC) or the NADPH oxidase inhibitor diphenylene iodonium chloride (DPI) almost completely neutralized the increased migration rate of dermal fibroblasts promoted by bFGF. Akt, Rac1 and JNK were rapidly activated by bFGF in dermal fibroblasts, and bFGF-induced ROS production and promoted dermal fibroblast migration were significantly attenuated when suppressed respectively. In addition, bFGF-induced increase in ROS production was indispensable for the activation of focal adhesion kinase (FAK) and paxillin. Therefore, our data suggested that bFGF promotes the migration of human dermal fibroblasts under diabetic conditions through increased ROS production via the PI3K/Akt-Rac1-JNK pathways.

Keywords: bFGF, human dermal fibroblast

This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY-NC) License. See for full terms and conditions.
How to cite this article:
Shi H, Cheng Y, Ye J, Cai P, Zhang J, Li R, Yang Y, Wang Z, Zhang H, Lin C, Lu X, Jiang L, Hu A, Zhu X, Zeng Q, Fu X, Li X, Xiao J. bFGF Promotes the Migration of Human Dermal Fibroblasts under Diabetic Conditions through Reactive Oxygen Species Production via the PI3K/Akt-Rac1- JNK Pathways. Int J Biol Sci 2015; 11(7):845-859. doi:10.7150/ijbs.11921. Available from