Background: Burns induce a boost in local and systemic complement levels as well as immune
cell infiltration in the burn wound, which may negatively affect wound healing.
Objective: In this study, the effects of long-term treatment with complement inhibitor C1 esterase
inhibitor (C1inh) on post-burn inflammation and wound healing parameters were analyzed in time
up to 60 days post-burn.
Methods: Burned pigs were treated either with or without C1inh up to 15 days post-burn. Burn wound
biopsies and blood were collected at different time points up to 60 days post-burn. Thereafter, complement
in blood as well as complement and immune cells in the wound, capillary leakage, necrosis, reepithelialization
and wound contraction were quantified.
Results: No significant differences in complement C3 blood levels were observed at any time point
between C1inh-treated and control pigs. In the wound, complement C4 levels were significantly
lower in the C1inh group than in controls at day 3-6 and 21-30 post-burn. Similarly, C3 levels, neutrophil
and macrophage infiltration in the wound were, although not statistically significant, reduced
in C1inh-treated pigs at day 9-14 post-burn. No differences in lymphocyte infiltration in the
wound were found between C1inh and control pigs. C1inh-treated pigs also showed reduced capillary
leakage. Despite these effects, no significant differences in the long-term wound healing parameters
necrosis, reepithelialization and wound contraction were observed between C1inh and
Conclusion: In pigs, 15 days of C1inh treatment after burn, leads to a reduction in local inflammation
and capillary leakage in the burn wound without affecting long-term wound healing parameters.