Fat Tissue May Be Key to Scleroderma's Progression

Author: Nora Dunne
Date Published: February-2015
Source: Northwestern Medicine

Northwestern Medicine scientists have discovered that scar-forming cells in scleroderma come from fat tissue within layers of the skin, a new cellular origin that could be a key to developing treatments for the incurable disease in the future. Scleroderma, also called systemic sclerosis, is a rare autoimmune connective tissue disorder in which the skin thickens and hardens, forming scar-like buildup, a process called fibrosis. Until now, scientists have not known the mechanisms responsible for tissue fibrosis.