Laminar Construct for Tissue-Engineered Dermal Equivalent

Life Sciences : Materials and Compounds

Available for licensing


  • Laura Suggs, Ph.D. , Biomedical Engineering
  • Ge Zhang, Ph.D. , Biomedical Engineering
  • Shanmugasundaram Natesan , US Army-Institute of Surgical Research (USAISR)
  • Robert Christy , US Army-Institute of Surgical Research (USAISR)
  • Thomas Walters , US Army-Institute of Surgical Research (USAISR)

Background/unmet need

The state-of-the-art in tissue-engineered skin relies on the sequential culture of dermal fibroblasts and keratinocytes on a collagen matrix. Current technologies in this field exhibit several areas that need improvement. For instance, the culture process relies on relatively long culture times in order to increase cell numbers within the construct. This technique relies on the use of a relatively thin dermal equivalent to provide diffusional transport of nutrients to the implanted cells rather than a robust blood vessel network.

Invention Description

Inventors from The University of Texas at Austin and U.S. Army Institute of Surgical Research have jointly developed an innovative dermal equivalent or tissue-engineered skin. The cells can be sourced from an individual patient, which results in an autograft with fewer immune complications. Additionally, the cells do not require culture times, which results in a simpler production; and the present invention provides for the formation of blood vessels within the cell/matrix structure which may increase the viability of the construct. This technology consists of multiple layers including a cell population and a hydrogel matrix.

Market potential/applications

The present invention would be useful for treating severe, full-thickness burns; non-healing skin ulcers; and other surgical indications where there is loss or need for skin coverage of soft tissue.

Development Stage

Lab/bench prototype

IP Status