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  • Poster presentation
  • Open Access

Poster 1024: Accelerated healing of full-thickness cutaneous wound using purified apitoxin from asiatic honey bee (Apis cerana Fabricius)

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World Allergy Organization Journal20147:32

  • Published:


  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor
  • Herpes Zoster
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor mRNA
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Protein
  • Skin Wound Healing


Cutaneous wound healing is a conserved, complex, multi-cellular, multi-molecular process, which is executed and regulated by equally complex signaling networks involving numerous growth factors, cytokines and chemokines. It functions to facilitate barrier restoration following injury-induced loss of skin integrity. Apitoxin, or honey bee venom, has been claimed to be of use in skin wound healing, arthritis, herpes zoster, etc. However, the major allergens in apitoxin such as phospholipase A2 and hyaluronidase, can easily induce life-threatening IgE-mediated allergic reactions in humans. Thus these destructive components should be removed effectively before the apitoxin therapy.


In order to test the accelerated wound healing effect of apitoxin from Asiatic honey bee (Apis cerana Fabricius), with allergens removed by the 10kDa molecular weight cut-off (MWCO) membrane ultrafitration, full-thickness skin defect of 5×5 mm was constructed on the dorsal area of KM mice. The relative size was measured, and the histological staining of the wound in 3, 5 and 7 days was conducted. The expression of transforming growth factor (TGF)-β1, fibronectin, vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and collagen-I mRNA in the wound healing area was assayed by real time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). And the amount of TGF-β1, fibronectin, VEGF and collagen-I protein was determined by immunohistochemical staining.


Compared with the control and crude apitoxin groups, the healing rate of full-thickness cutaneous wound was much higher in the purified apitoxin group by 15% at least, with the expression level of TGF-β1, fibronectin and VEGF mRNA decreased, and collagen-I mRNA increased evidently. In addition, the amount of TGF-β1, fibronectin and VEGF protein in the purified apitoxin group was significantly lower than the control and crude apitoxin groups, while collagen-I was much higher by contrast.


Apitoxin purified by membrane ultrafiltration could enhance the healing process of full-thickness wound in the skin, probably due to its allergic reaction and inflammation symptom decreased effectively. Furthermore, It also played an important role in wound healing, involving complex biological mechanisms associated with the expression of TGF-β1, fibronectin, VEGF and collagen-I, but the underlying mechanism still needs to be further elucidated.

Authors’ Affiliations

Chinese Academy of Sciences, South China Sea Institute of Oceanology, CAS Key Laboratory of Tropical Marine Bio-resources and Ecology, Guangzhou, China


© Chen et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2014

This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.