Prof. Dr. Ernst Reichmann, PhD
Name of the Institution
Tissue Biology Research Unit
University Children's Hospital, Zurich
August Forel Strasse 7
+41(0)44 634 89 11 Prof. Reichmann
+41(0)44 634 89 13 Assistant
Dr. Pontiggia, Luca, PhD, Staff Scientist
Dr. Daniela Marino, PhD, EU Project Manager
Dr. Thomas Biedermann, PhD, Postdoc
Dr. Fabienne Hartmann-Fritsch, PhD, Head GMP Production & Regulatory Affairs
Dr. Agnes Klar, PhD, Postdoc
Dr. Luca Mazzone, MD, Fetal Skingineering
Dr. Sophie-Haberzeth, MD, Pediatric surgery fellow
Sarah Meyer, B.Sc., Biological Lab Technician
Monia Sobrio, M. Sc., Biological Lab Technician
Silvia Stüdeli, M. Sc., Biological Lab Technician
Natalia Zapiorkowska, M. Sc., Biological Lab Technician
Jakub Zimoch, PhD-Student
Katarzyna Michala, PhD-Student
Claudia Sax Steffen, Managing Assistant
MainField(s) of Research, AbstractField(s) of Research, Abstract
Our goal is to develop autologous dermo-epidermal skin composites (full thickness skin analogues) that can be used clinically to cover skin defects of any origin in one single surgical intervention. To achieve that, we are testing different biodegradable matrices which serve as scaffolds for keratinocytes, melanocytes, endothelial cells and fibroblasts.
Initial take, development, and function of transplanted engineered tissue substitutes are crucially dependent on rapid and adequate blood perfusion. Therefore, the development of rapidly and efficiently vascularized tissue grafts is vital for tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. Our goal is to develop pre-vascularized human skin grafts and to evaluate the effects of pre-vascularization on skin regeneration in vivo.
Additionally we want to systematically add melanocytes to autologous substitutes to achieve an additional protective function as well as an aesthetic improvement of autologous dermo-epideramal skin substitutes.
Clinical I & II Studies
After more than 14 years of research, complex, bioengineered skin grafts were developed containing blood and lymph microvascular plexi and the melanocyte compartment, hence resembling the properties of normal human skin as closely as possible. The close collaboration between the TBRU and the Pediatric Burn Center of the Department of Surgery of the Children’s Hospital in Zurich made it possible that the above-mentioned skin grafts can be transplanted in just one surgical intervention. The results of the current Phase I Studies are very encouraging and the Phase II Studies will start soon in Zurich, Amsterdam and Berlin. We are glad for the close and excellent collaboration with the Clinical Trial Center (CTC) and the Swiss Center for Regenerative Medicine (SCRM).
Main Fields of Research, Keywords
Tissue engineering, tissue substitutes, transplantation, biodegradable matrix, adult stem cells, FACS, gene transfer, epithelio-mesenchymal signalling. Vascularization of skin-substitutes.
Special Techniques and Equipment
Development of dermo-epidermal tissue composites, transient gene therapy
Education and Training
We have training opportunities for Master and PhD students and Postdocs.
CRPP: Clinical Research Priority Programm of the University of Zurich
iTERM: Marie Curie Initial Training Network (ITN) on Training Multidisciplinary scientists for Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine.
EuroSTEC: funded by the European Commission under the Sixth Framework Programme (FP6). Integrated Project (IP) on Soft tissue engineering for congenital birth defects in children: from biomatrix - cell interaction - model system to clinical trials.
MultiTERM: Marie Curie Initial Training Network (ITN) on Training Multidisciplinary scientists for Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine.