Propolis is the generic name of a complex of resinous compound collected by honeybees and it has been utilized for many years in folk medicine. As other products generated by honeybees (such as royal jelly, pollen, honey), propolis has great therapeutic properties, but very little scientific information is available. Therefore, this study was aimed at exploring the potential wound healing properties of propolis. To that end, we utilized an in vitro scratch wound healing model consisting of human immortalized keratinocytes. Our scratch wound data clearly demonstrated that propolis induced a pronounced increase in the wound repair abilities of keratinocytes. A cell migration assay showed that propolis stimulated keratinocytes to close the wound. We revealed the role of H2
as the main mediator of propolis regenerative properties. We showed that this extracellularly released H2
could pass across the plasma membrane through a specific aquaporin (i.e., AQP3) modulating intracellular responses. The data offer a biological characterization of propolis positive effects suggesting that propolis could also be utilized in wound treatment within clinical settings.
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