The study is designed as a 14 week prospective observational study where patients with diabetic wounds visiting the Indiana University Health Comprehensive Wound Center (CWC) will be enrolled. Patients enrolled will be followed for 14 weeks including 4 study visits, initial visit (week 0), study visit 2 (week 2), study visit 3 (week 4), and will return for a final follow-up study visit 4 (week 14; miR-200b arm only). Standardized Care Outline will be per physician discretion.
The initial visit will take place during the patients regularly scheduled CWC visit and the following will take place: informed consent will be obtained, baseline demographics and medical history with be collected, current labs and medications will be recorded, wound data will be obtained, an ankle brachial index will be completed for patients with leg wounds below the knee, if not already completed per Standard of Care (SoC) since onset of the wound, and wound photographs for digital planimetry to measure wound area. Wound fluid will be collected using a filter paper method, aspiration method, or via the NPWT (Negative Pressure Wound Therapy, also known as Wound Vac) sponge prior to debridement. Additionally, two 3 mm punch tissue biopsies will be obtained from the patient’s physician; however, this is optional. If the wound shows signs of healing and does not show signs of infection (i.e. the wound has not stalled in healing for 2 or more weeks or become larger in size) or the wound has been declared healed by their physician, the biopsies will not be obtained. The study visits 2-4 will include the following: a medication and adverse event review, wound data will be recorded, wound photographs, wound fluid, and two 3 mm punch tissue biopsies will be obtained from the patient’s physician.
The risks associated with this research study are low. There are no therapeutic interventions or medications as part of this study to be administered depending on the amount of sensation the subject has at the site of the wound.
If the subject is receiving a biopsy, the wound site will be numbed by applying local anesthesia as appropriate to the area being biopsied. There may be some discomfort with the tissue biopsy procedure, but all reasonable efforts will be made to minimize pain. The biopsy procedure is done within the boundaries of the existing wound to avoid giving the patient a separate new wound. Bleeding is a possible complication, but the risk is low for the small biopsies and is reduced by using local anesthetics with epinephrine, and silver nitrate sticks are available in each room to cauterize biopsy sites as needed. Infection is also a potential risk; however, wound tissue biopsies are routinely performed as the standard of care in the CWC to diagnose wound infection. The biopsy site will be appropriately monitored for infection by the physician managing the wound during routine wound clinic visits.
The ABI test may result in temporary discomfort around the ankle or foot when the cuff is inflated, but does not present any further physical or medical risks. The wound fluid collection is non-invasive and does not present any risk. Study participants will not benefit directly from participation in this study. This research information has the potential of providing considerable benefits to wound care by identifying a key player that influences the closure of chronic diabetic wounds. Such knowledge should help develop novel biomarker and or miR-directed therapeutic strategies.
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