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Cultured Melanocytes: From Skin Biopsy to Transplantation

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Restoration of cutaneous pigmentation has been achieved in stable vitiligo by autologous melanocyte transplantation. This study was aimed to develop a methodology to deliver melanocytes to vitiliginous area following their processing and culture in a centralized facility. Here we report a methodology to culture melanocytes on carrier films, transport the cells, and graft them on vitiliginous areas. The salient features of this study include: 1) development of polylactic acid (PLA) films that support melanocyte attachment, growth, and delivery; 2) establish transport conditions for skin biopsies from hospitals; 3) establish transport conditions for cultured cells from cell processing center to hospitals. Results suggest that PLA films could serve as carriers for melanocytes during transport. “Upside-down” application of the graft results in the migration of cells from the films into the dermabraded area. The transport conditions ensure cell viability for 96 h. This system could help clinicians, who do not have access to cell culture facilities, transplant cultured melanocytes in a cost-effective manner.
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Keywords: Melanocytes; Transplantation; Treatment; Vitiligo

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2008-03-01

More about this publication?
  • Cell Transplantation publishes original, peer-reviewed research and review articles on the subject of cell transplantation and its application to human diseases. To ensure high-quality contributions from all areas of transplantation, separate section editors and editorial boards have been established. Articles deal with a wide range of topics including physiological, medical, preclinical, tissue engineering, and device-oriented aspects of transplantation of nervous system, endocrine, growth factor-secreting, bone marrow, epithelial, endothelial, and genetically engineered cells, among others. Basic clinical studies and immunological research papers are also featured. To provide complete coverage of this revolutionary field, Cell Transplantation will report on relevant technological advances, and ethical and regulatory considerations of cell transplants. Cell Transplantation is now an Open Access journal starting with volume 18 in 2009, and therefore there will be an inexpensive publication charge, which is dependent on the number of pages, in addition to the charge for color figures. This will allow work to be disseminated to a wider audience and also entitle the corresponding author to a free PDF, as well as prepublication of an unedited version of the manuscript.

    Cell Transplantation is now being published by SAGE. Please visit their website for the most recent issues.

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