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Biomaterials. 2010 Nov;31(32):8299-312. doi: 10.1016/j.biomaterials.2010.07.055. Epub 2010 Aug 19.

High density gene expression microarrays and gene ontology analysis for identifying processes in implanted tissue engineering constructs.

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Department of Biochemistry 280, Nijmegen Centre for Molecular Life Sciences, Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre, P.O. Box 9101, 6500 HB Nijmegen, The Netherlands.


The in vivo performance of tissue-engineered constructs is often based on generally accepted read-out parameters, like (immuno)histology. In this study, high-density gene expression microarrays and gene ontology (GO) analysis were used as a read-out tool to identify the biological processes occurring after implantation of an acellular collagen-based skin construct using a rat full-thickness wound model. A freely-available program (DAVID) was used to identify up/downregulated biological processes (GO-terms) and results were compared to wound healing/regeneration without a construct. The entire process from RNA isolation to biological interpretation is explained step-by-step. Conventional (immuno)histology was used to validate the biological processes identified and indicate that microarray analysis may provide a valuable, fast and unbiased tool to evaluate the in vivo performance of tissue-engineered constructs. However, challenges remain e.g. with regards to the development of specific GO-terms and annotation of the (rat) genome.

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