Author(s): Fu Q
To investigate the transformation of characteristics of epidermal cells from foreskin which were used to reconstruct male rabbit anterior urethra in combination with acellular collagen matrices.
In three rabbits, autologous foreskin epidermal cells were isolated, expanded in vitro, and seeded (inoculated) onto a tubular acellular collagen matrix, acquired from allogeneic rabbit bladder submucosa. A urethral mucosal defect was created, and urethral reconstruction was performed with the tubular acellular collagen matrix seeded with epidermal cells.
On gross examination at 12 months following the procedure, the mucosa of the urethral grafts appeared lubricous and smooth. Urethrography showed that a wide urethral caliber had been maintained without any sign of strictures. Histological examination showed a transitional cell layer in the graft without evidence of a margin between the graft and the host tissue at 12 months postoperatively.
Epidermal cells seeded onto acellular collagen matrices can be successfully used to reconstruct urethras that have defects and are transformed to transitional epithelial cells.