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Ohki T, Yamato M, Ota M et al.

Tokyo Women’s Medical University, Tokyo, Japan.

 Gastroenterology 2012;143:582–8.e1–2.

Editor’s note: Tissue engineering has not been used very often to treat disorders of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract, but this small initial study of patients with esophageal ulcers following submucosal dissection of neoplasms is very encouraging. Nine patients with such lesions who underwent endoscopic submucosal dissection were accrued over a 3-year period at a single institution. Typically, such patients develop ulcers with stricturing, requiring balloon dilation or stenting following extensive endoscopic dissections. To obviate these side-effects, the investigators removed a small section of each patient’s interior buccal mucosa under local anesthesia and collected the mucosal epithelial cells. These were then dissociated with enzymatic techniques and grown in a tissue dish for 16 days to provide an autologous sheet of mucosal cells that were then placed on a support membrane and transplanted endoscopically onto the esophageal ulcer bed.

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