While further studies are underway, these initial observations indicate the applicability of this technology, specifically illustrating that following surgical removal of ≈50% of the LD (Latissimus Dorsi) muscle, implanted TE-SKM (tissue engineered skeletal muscle) can recover ≈75% of the maximal isometric tetanic force observed in native muscles within 2 months of implantation. In summary, the rodent LD defect model appears to be relevant for further proof of concept studies exploring the utility of TE-SKM constructs in restoring function to skeletal muscle defects associated with volumetric muscle loss injury.
Although the battle mortality rate for US forces has dropped from 30% in WWII to less than 10% in Afghanistan and Iraq, there has been a parallel increase in the number of seriously injured soldiers who survive with extraordinary injuries, especially complex and severe extremity and head/neck injuries. These traumatic
injuries are not adequately treated with current therapies and tissue engineering of skeletal muscle provides a viable alternative. As part of the Armed Forces Institute
for Regenerative Medicine (AFIRM), our TE-SKM technology is advancing the progress of the craniofacial reconstruction program