Skin Microbiota



Chronic wounds are a recurrent problem in not only our nation’s health care system but globally, which can be expensive and resource-intensive to treat. For chronic wounds, the inability to heal is caused by a pathogenic role played by microbial biofilms, and this is becoming increasingly clear. A square centimeter of human skin can harbor up to one billion bacteria. The skin consists of bacteria, fungus, viruses, and arthropods, all of which are part of the skin’s microbiome.  The skin’s microbiota is very important to both skin health and disease. Skin wound healing is regulated by interactions between commensal microbes and the many types of cells that help the skin’s barrier to heal. They have a conversation between host cells and the microbiome which is out of imbalanced in chronic wounds.  In this blog, you will learn about new sequencing and analysis methods that have been used to study the chronic wound microbiota, how these findings show how complex the microbial communities are and how they are linked to the health of people with chronic wound disorders. Also, about how animal models of wound infections with many different kinds of bacteria can help us understand how they work.


Microbiota Research


Researchers’ interest in the relationship between microbiota and disease has increased recently, and new tools have been developed to analyze large sequence datasets. Researchers have found evidence that pathogenic biofilms contribute to impeded healing and an increased risk of infection despite the lack of knowledge about the role of microbiota in healing. According to recent research, the skin microbiome may influence a wide range of disorders and diseases, including colorectal cancer and bowel disease. Acne and dermatitis, as well as psoriasis, rosacea, and other skin problems that are caused by the immune system, play an even greater impact. A person’s healthy, intact skin often has a different microbiota than the wound-free skin they’re wearing. There are times when this microbiota can prolong wounds and postpone recovery. The complexities of this connection are still being unraveled. 


Treatment in Wound Chronicity


Antibiotic therapy is currently the major means of treating chronic wounds, despite the lack of evidence of benefit. The primary disadvantage of this therapeutic method is that antibiotic-resistant bacteria are becoming more widespread in wounds. These antibiotics should be used solely to treat acute infections; they should not be used to treat chronic wounds.  Although future treatment of chronic wounds will almost certainly rely heavily on genetic analysis that enables the development of a tailored treatment plan, our understanding of which bacteria are harmful and beneficial remains restricted. As this body of knowledge grows, so will the sophistication of this type of treatment.




Without this essential knowledge, the best way to treat pathogenic biofilms in chronic wounds is to use a multifaceted approach that includes first cleaning the wound, frequently debriding it, and then applying the appropriate advanced wound care antimicrobial wound dressings.




The views and opinions stated in this blog are exclusively those of the author and do not reflect iWound, its affiliates, or partner companies.


Future Reading and References


Tomic-Canic M, Burgess JL, O’Neill KE, Strbo N, Pastar I. Skin Microbiota and its Interplay with Wound Healing. Am J Clin Dermatol. 2020 Sep;21(Suppl 1):36-43. doi: 10.1007/s40257-020-00536-w. PMID: 32914215; PMCID: PMC7584558.

Weyrich LS, Dixit S, Farrer AG, Cooper AJ, Cooper AJ. The skin microbiome: associations between altered microbial communities and disease. Australas J Dermatol. 2015;56:268–74.


Cho I, Blaser MJ. The human microbiome: at the interface of health and disease. Nat Rev Genet. 2012;13(4):260–70.


Skin Biome and Wound Chronicity | WoundSource.



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