Abdominal wall allograft: Preclinical biomechanical investigation of a novel reconstructive adjunct

Brent R. De George, Jonathan Bryce Olenczak, Angela Pineros-Fernandez, Raymond F. Morgan, Patrick S. Cottler, David B. Drake

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: Acellular dermal matrices have revolutionized abdominal wall reconstruction; however, device failure and hernia recurrence remain significant problems. Fascia grafts are a reconstructive adjunct with increased tensile strength compared with acellular dermal matrices; however, clinical use is limited by insufficient donor material and donor site morbidity. To this end, we investigate the biomechanical properties of human abdominal wall allografts (AWAs) consisting of the anterior rectus sheath from xiphoid to pubis. Methods: After cadaveric procurement of 6 human AWAs, the tissue was divided horizontally and a matched-sample study was performed with specimens randomized to 2 groups: fresh, unprocessed versus processed with gamma irradiation and decellularization. Specimens were evaluated for physical properties, DNA content, tensile strength, and electron microscopy. Results: All AWA donors were male, with a mean age of 55.2 years (range, 35-74 years). Procured AWAs had a mean length of 21.70 ±1.8 cm, width of 14.30 ± 1.32 cm, and area of 318.50 cm, and processing resulted in a 98.3% reduction in DNA content. Ultimate tensile strength was significantly increased after tissue processing, and after subcutaneous implantation, processed AWA demonstrated 4-fold increased tensile strength compared with unprocessed AWAs. Conclusions: Acellular AWAs represent a novel reconstructive adjunct for abdominal wall reconstruction with the potential of replacing "like with like" without additional donor site morbidity or antigenicity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S315-S321
JournalAnnals of Plastic Surgery
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2017

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
Copyright © 2017 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.


  • Abdominal wall allograft
  • Abdominal wall reconstruction
  • Acellular
  • Biomechanical properties

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


Dive into the research topics of 'Abdominal wall allograft: Preclinical biomechanical investigation of a novel reconstructive adjunct'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this