To examine porcine acellular dermal matrix (ADM) as a xenogenic dermal substitute in a rat model.
Acellular dermal matrix has been used in the treatment of full-thickness skin injuries as an allogenic dermal substitute providing a stable wound base in human and animal studies.
Xenogenic and allogenic ADMs were produced by treating porcine or rat skin with Dispase and Triton X-100. Full-thickness skin defects (225 mm2) were created on the dorsum of rats (n = 29), porcine or rat ADMs were implanted in them, and these were overlain with ultrathin split-thickness skin grafts (STSGs). In two adjacent wounds, 0.005- or 0.017-inch-thick autografts were implanted. In other experiments, the antimicrobial agent used during ADM processing (azide or a mixture of antibiotics) and the orientation of the implanted ADM (papillary or reticular side of ADM facing the STSG) were studied. Grafts were evaluated grossly and histologically for 30 days after surgery.
Significant wound contraction was seen at 14, 20, and 30 days after surgery in wounds receiving xenogenic ADM, allogenic ADM, and thin STSGs. Contraction of wounds containing xenogenic ADM was significantly greater than that of wounds containing allogenic ADM at 30 days after surgery. Graft take was poor in wounds containing xenogenic ADM and moderately good in those containing allogenic ADM. Wound healing was not significantly affected by the antimicrobial agent used during ADM preparation or by the ADM orientation.
Dispase–Triton-treated allogenic ADM was useful as a dermal substitute in full-thickness skin defects, but healing with xenogenic ADM was poor.
From the *Burn Center and the †Department of Pathology, Cook County Hospital, Chicago, Illinois; ‡Wheaton College, Wheaton, Illinois; and the §Department of Surgery, Cook County Hospital, and Department of General Surgery, Rush Medical College, Chicago, Illinois
Correspondence: Robert J. Walter, PhD, Department of Surgery, Hektoen Institute for Medical Research, Cook County Hospital, 627 S. Wood St., Chicago, IL 60612.
Accepted for publication August 7, 2000.