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Researchers have known for some time that the incidence of stretch marks varies widely among women at similar risk. According to the study, surgeons may now be able to identify which women are at risk. Identifying skin differences may help researchers identify new, more effective therapies to prevent stretch marks and better treat fully developed ones. Current treatments for stretch marks tend to fade the marks, rather than fully remove them.
The study found that cells in skin samples taken from healthy looking regions of skin in women with stretch marks could not quickly reproduce or repair stretch-dependent skin injuries. The skin of women with stretch marks also had a pronounced deficiency in total DNA and total protein. These deficiencies were not seen in the skin samples of women without stretch marks.