This is incredible - but something which seems so obvious when you actually consider how our bodies work.
No wonder jet lag can take such a toll on us - our bodies are in a completely different state when we are supposed to be sleeping. It just highlights again how important it is to being getting sufficient rest.
The research, published in Science Translational Medicine, examined 118 patients at NHS burns units. It showed the average 11-day difference in healing times between people hurt at night and during the day. Detailed lab work showed skin cells called fibroblasts were changing their abilities in a 24-hour pattern. Fibroblasts are the body's first responders, rushing to the site of injury to close a wound. During the day they are primed to react, but they lose this ability at night. Dr John O'Neill, one of the researchers, told the BBC: "It is like the 100m. The sprinter down on the blocks, poised and ready to go, is always going to beat the guy going from a standing start."