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Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology
Volume 2010 (2010), Article ID 840363, 11 pages
Research Article

Preparation and Characterization of a Novel Skin Substitute

Department of Plastic Surgery, Burn Unit and Skin Bank, Ospedale CTO, Turin, Via Zuretti 29, 10126 Torino, Italy

Received 20 May 2010; Revised 12 July 2010; Accepted 29 July 2010

Academic Editor: Anton M. Jetten

Copyright © 2010 Carlotta Castagnoli et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Autologous epidermal cell cultures (CEA) represent a possibility to treat extensive burn lesions, since they allow a significative surface expansion which cannot be achieved with other surgical techniques based on autologous grafting. Moreover currently available CEA preparations are difficult to handle and their take rate is unpredictable. This study aimed at producing and evaluating a new cutaneous biosubstitute made up of alloplastic acellular glycerolized dermis (AAGD) and CEA to overcome these difficulties. A procedure that maintained an intact basement membrane was developed, so as to promote adhesion and growth of CEA on AAGD. Keratinocytes were seeded onto AAGD and cultured up to 21 days. Viability tests and immunohistochemical analysis with specific markers were carried out at 7, 14, and 21 days, to evaluate keratinocyte adhesion, growth, and maturation. Our results support the hypothesis that this newly formed skin substitute could allow its permanent engraftment in clinical application.