Secretory leukocyte protease inhibitor mediates non-redundant functions necessary for normal wound healing
Secretory leukocyte protease inhibitor (SLPI) is a serine protease inhibitor with anti-microbial properties found in mucosal fluids. It is expressed during cutaneous wound healing. Impaired healing states are characterized by excessive proteolysis and often bacterial infection, leading to the hypothesis that SLPI may have a role in this process. We have generated mice null for the gene encoding SLPI (Slpi), which show impaired cutaneous wound healing with increased inflammation and elastase activity. The altered inflammatory profile involves enhanced activation of local TGF-β in Slpinull mice. We propose that SLPI is a pivotal endogenous factor necessary for optimal wound healing.