Cultivation of human keratinocyte stem cells: Current and future clinical applications

G. Pellegrini, S. Bondanza, L. Guerra, M. De Luca

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Cultured human keratinocytes have a wide spectrum of clinical applications. Clinical results reported by several investigators are, however, contradictory. In this review, the authors discuss the biological and surgical issues which play a key role in the clinical outcome of cultured epidermal autografts used for the treatment of massive full-thickness burns. The importance of cultivation of epidermal stem cells and of their transplantation onto a wound bed prepared with donor dermis is emphasised. The paper also reviews recent data showing that: (i) cultured epidermal autografts bearing melanocytes can be used for the treatment of stable vitiligo; (ii) keratinocytes isolated from other lining epithelia, such as oral, urethral and corneal epithelia, can be cultivated and grafted onto patients suffering from disabling epithelial defects; (iii) keratinocyte stem cells can be stably transduced with retroviral vectors and are therefore attractive targets for the gene therapy of genodermatoses.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)778-790
Number of pages13
JournalMedical and Biological Engineering and Computing
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1998


  • Burns
  • Epidermis
  • Gene therapy
  • Genodermatoses
  • Keratinocyte
  • Melanocyte
  • Skin
  • Stem cell
  • Tissue engineering
  • Vitiligo

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Health Informatics
  • Health Information Management
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Computational Theory and Mathematics


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