Introduction Tissue engineering of the oesophagus (TEO) has been proposed as a therapeutic alternative to oesophageal substitution. Acellular matrices are ideal for TEO because they contain all the extracellular matrix (ECM) information. The aim of this study was to compare two techniques of oesophageal decellularization and isolate oesophageal epithelial stem cells.
Methods Rat oesophagi (n = 20) were decellularized using two methods: (a) detergent-enzymatic treatment (DET); (b) sodium dodecyl sulphate (SDS). Samples were analysed by DNA and collagen quantification, Haematoxylin and Eosin (H&E), Masson’s Trichrome, Elastin Van Gieson and DAPI.
Results The oesophagi were decellularized following 2 cycles of DET and 48 h of SDS respectively. Histology demonstrated loss of microarchitecture and significantly more disrupted elastic fibres in SDS- compared to DET-treated oesophagi.
Conclusion DET is the preferred method for scaffold production. The combination of decellularised scaffolds and muscle cells could advance the development of a viable tissue engineered neo-oesophagus.
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