AUTHORS : MacNeil S.

2007 Nature. 2007 Feb 22;445(7130):874-80
The Tissue Engineering Group, Department of Engineering Materials and Division of Biomedical Sciences and Medicine, Kroto Research Institute, North Campus, University of Sheffield, Broad Lane, Sheffield S3 7HQ, UK.

Progress and opportunities for tissue-engineered skin

Tissue-engineered skin is now a reality. For patients with extensive full-thickness burns, laboratory expansion of skin cells to achieve barrier function can make the difference between life and death, and it was this acute need that drove the initiation of tissue engineering in the 1980s. A much larger group of patients have ulcers resistant to conventional healing, and treatments using cultured skin cells have been devised to restart the wound-healing process. In the laboratory, the use of tissue-engineered skin provides insight into the behaviour of skin cells in healthy skin and in diseases such as vitiligo, melanoma, psoriasis and blistering disorders.