9 Apr 2015

Tissue engineering for treatment of burn wounds: Phase 1 clinical trial running

L-R: In the Skin Tissue Culture Laboratory, Mr Dion Martinus
(Quality Officer), Ms Heather Cleland (Director, Burns Unit)
and Dr Shiva Akbarzadeh (Senior Research Fellow)
The Alfred Skin Tissue Culture Laboratory pursues a translational research program directed towards the investigation and development of tissue engineered products for wound healing.

A phase 1 clinical trial evaluating the use of cultured keratinocytes as an adjunctive therapy for patients with severe burns commenced recruitment in 2014. To date, five patients have been recruited.
The trial is expected to be completed by October 2016.  The technique allows keratinocyte cell isolation from a small biopsy from the patient, which are expanded to form sheets of graftable epidermis on a fibrin carrier. The Cultured Epidermal Autograft sheets are evaluated for comparative healing efficacy in wound beds in association with different dermal components (vascularized allograft dermis, residual reticular native dermis, and widely meshed autograft).

In addition to producing cultured keratinocytes for clinical use, the laboratory conducts research directed to the development of a tissue engineered 3-dimensional skin construct.  A mouse model to test novel dermal substitutes in animals has been established. A project to conduct a comparative study on a novel synthetic dermal substitute vs a bovine derived commercially available collagen dermal matrix has been completed.  This work informs a multicentre clinical trial to commence in 2015 evaluating BTM.

The laboratory continues to host and train Honours and BMedSc(Hons) students in the area of skin biology in relation to burns treatment.

See more: www.med.monash.edu.au/surgery/alfred/research/skin-tissue-lab.html
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