’Gamat‘ extract comparable to hydrogels for wounds
Gels utilizing Stichopus horrens (golden sea cucumber/gamat) extract show a similar efficacy to standard-of-care hydrogels for promoting wound healing, according to a prospective study.
Researchers from Hospital Universiti Science Malaysia (HUSM) compared the effectiveness of a 15% S. horrens-based gel versus conventionally used hydrogel on wound healing rates, pain and pruritus on 25 human split-skin graft donors over 21 days. No significant differences were observed in re-epithelialization of the wounds, pain scores or pruritus scores (p<0.01) between the two treatments. [Complement Ther Med 2018;41:261–266]
“This is consistent with other hydrogel treated skin graft donor site wound studies done previously,” noted Dr Adzim Poh, main study author. “We also confirmed low adverse effects as stated by other studies.”
Gamat (which refers to multiple species of sea cucumber) is an ingredient of traditional medicine which is widely used in multiple Southeast Asian countries as a topical treatment for wounds and pain. Those of the Stichopus genus are most commonly used in the consumer market. [Malayan Nat J 2010;62:315–334]
According to Poh and colleagues, gamat extracts contain a rich nutrient composition, including essential amino acids, high polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fatty acids, all of which may play a role in tissue repair. S. horrens in particular contains eicosapentaenoic acid, which may initiate wound healing by prostaglandin inhibition and blood-clotting activity. [Gen Pharmacol Vasc Syst 1999;33:337–340]
The gel tested was comprised of 15% gamat liquid, imidazolidinyl urea, paraben mix, emulsifiers, a gelling agent, a pH modifier and purified water. Poh added that further studies might be needed to assess the effect of different concentrations of S. horrens extract, as well as its effect on deeper, full-thickness wounds.