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Keywords:

  • non-invasive imaging;
  • optical coherence tomography;
  • tissue-engineered skin;
  • re-epithelialization;
  • acellular dermis;
  • collagen gels

Abstract

There is an increasing need for a robust, simple to use, non-invasive imaging technology to follow tissue-engineered constructs as they develop. Our aim was to evaluate the use of swept-source optical coherence tomography (SS-OCT) to image tissue-engineered skin as it developed over several weeks. Tissue-engineered skin was produced using both de-epithelialized acellular dermis (DED) and amorphous collagen gels. In both cases the epidermis could be readily distinguished from the neodermis, based on a comparison with standard destructive histology of samples. Constructs produced with DED showed more epidermal/dermal maturation than those produced using collagen. The development of tissue-engineered skin based on DED was accurately monitored with SS-OCT over 3 weeks and confirmed with conventional histology. Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.