Gene therapy with adenovirus-mediated VEGF enhances skin flap prefabrication

Gurunluoglu, Raffi; Meirer, Romed; Shafighi, Mazier; Huemer, George M; Yilmaz, Berkhan; Piza-Katzer, Hildegunde (2005). Gene therapy with adenovirus-mediated VEGF enhances skin flap prefabrication. Microsurgery, 25(5), pp. 433-41. New York, N.Y.: Wiley-Liss 10.1002/micr.20142

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We investigated the feasibility in rats of enhancing skin-flap prefabrication with subdermal injections of adenovirus-encoding vascular endothelial growth factor (Ad-VEGF). The left saphenous vascular pedicle was used as a source for vascular induction. A peninsular abdominal flap (8 x 8 cm) was elevated as distally based, keeping the epigastric vessels intact on both sides. After the vascular pedicle was tacked underneath the abdominal flap, 34 rats were randomly divided into three groups according to treatment protocol. The implantation site around the pedicle was injected with Ad-VEGF in group I (n = 10), with adenovirus-encoding green fluorescent protein (Ad-GFP) in control group I (n = 14), and with saline in control group II (n = 10). All injections were given subdermally at four points around the implanted vessel by an individual blinded to the treatment protocol. The peninsular flap was sutured in its place, and 4 weeks later, an abdominal island flap based solely on the implanted vessels was elevated. The prefabricated island flap was sutured back, and flap viability was evaluated on day 7. Skin specimens were stained with hematoxylin and eosin for histological evaluation. In two rats from each group, microangiography was performed to visualize the vascularity of the prefabricated flaps. There was a significant increase in survival of prefabricated flaps in the Ad-VEGF group compared to the control groups: Ad-VEGF, 88.9 +/- 6.1% vs. Ad-GFP, 65.6 +/- 9.4% (P < 0.05) and saline, 56.0 +/- 3.4% (P < 0.05). Sections from four prefabricated flaps treated with Ad-GFP revealed multiple sites of shiny deposits of green fluorescent protein around the area of local administration 1 day and 3 weeks after gene therapy. Histological examination done under high-power magnification (x400) with a light microscope revealed increased vascularity and mild inflammation surrounding the implanted vessel in all groups. However, we were unable to demonstrate any significant quantitative difference with respect to vascularity and inflammatory infiltrates in prefabricated flaps treated with Ad-VEGF compared with controls. Microangiographic studies showed increased vascularity around the implanted pedicle, which was similar in all groups. However, vascularization was distributed in a larger area in the prefabricated flaps treated with Ad-VEGF. In this study, the authors demonstrated that adenovirus-mediated VEGF gene therapy increased the survival of prefabricated flaps, suggesting that it may allow prefabrication of larger flaps and have the potential to reduce the time required for flap maturation.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Orthopaedic, Plastic and Hand Surgery (DOPH) > Clinic of Plastic and Hand Surgery > Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgery

UniBE Contributor:

Shafighi, Maziar










Factscience Import

Date Deposited:

04 Oct 2013 15:04

Last Modified:

05 Dec 2022 14:19

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URI: (FactScience: 115642)

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