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Development of a biodegradable scaffold for dermo-epidermal skin grafts

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Hybrid technologies weave cotton and skin

Many research developments may not, of themselves, find the market niche they deserve. When crossed with other technologies, to form a new hybrid technology, they may however lead to the development of new products.

Industrial Technologies

Many research findings cannot find their way to market because it is quite difficult to fill the gap between real life practice and experimental work. Usually, in order to achieve this, ideas should be transferred from completely different fields and altered in a way to fit in the new specifications. This is exactly what has happened with the production of derma equivalent products within the "Development of a biodegradable scaffold for dermo-epidermal skin grafts" project. The project consortium firstly developed the appropriate know-how and tools in order to transform hyaluronic acid-based fibres (HYAFF 11) into tri-dimensional devices of variable thickness. Then they advanced the technology to cultivate and grow cells to be used for tissue engineering purposes. Finally, in an attempt to scale-up the whole process they developed a prototype carding machine transferring technology and ideas from the textile industry. This carding machine is able to produce non-woven fleece based on hyaluronic acid derivatives. Moreover the machine functions without using lubricating materials such as oil, enzyme or heat that are not recommended for the production of materials intended for clinical use. All these technological achievements are used in industry for the production of derma equivalent products. Additionally, they can be used after some modifications for the development of new human engineered tissues, organs or other similar material intended for clinical use.

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