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DECELLULARIZED BIOLOGIC MUSCLE FACSIA ABDOMINAL WALL SCAFFOLD GRAFT
Joseph F Buell1, *Joshua Helm2, *Iain Mckillop3, *Brandon Iglesias4, *Nicholas Pashos4, *Pleasant Hooper4
1Mission Health, University of North Carolina, Asheville, Asheville, NC;2Tulane Univerisity, New Orleans, LA;3Atrium Healthcare, Hepatobiliary Division, Charlotte, NC;4ASG Biotech, New Orleans, LA

The current challenges of complex abdominal wall reconstruction are high recurrence rates, risk of non-incorporation due to biofilm particularly in synthetic mesh and the cost of biologic mesh material. Since decellularized scaffolding mirrors tissue architecture, we are utilizing a similar anatomic structure, abdominal muscle & fascia, to form a biologic graft in efforts to address these challenges an abdominal muscle and fascia graft was created.
Methods:
Utilizing a patented serial decellularization method porcine abdominal wall scaffold mesh was created composed of muscle and fascia. Three cohorts of four immunocompetent rats had the mesh implanted on their dorsum. Cohorts were sacrificed at one, two and four weeks after implantation and the mesh implantation examined microscopically with Trichrome, H&E, and rat anti-endothelial antibody (RECA1).
Results:
All grafts were successfully implanted and there were no adverse events amongst the experimental groups. Necroscopy identified excellent initial engraftment of the scaffold into the animals. Microscopic evaluation of the animal-scaffold interface identified a linear progression of collagen deposition into the graft as well as a robust development of angiogenesis with new visible blood vessels to the graft. (FIGURE 1) No evidence of graft rejection or immunologic response was identified.
Conclusions:
The current study confirms decellularization processing can successfully create an composite abdominal (muscle and fascia) wall scaffold that can be implanted between species without rejection. Our current study also identified a robust angiogenic response with new vessel ingrowth to the entire graft. This may allow further exploitation of the previously described angiogenic capacities of D-muscle (decellularized-muscle) and the strength of D-fascia (decellularized-fascia). Further studies will be required to evaluate graft strength in small and large animal models and determine strategies to further exploit this scaffold.


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