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CMCC 1869

Silk fibroin bilayer grafts for reconstruction of esophageal defects

Inventors: Joshua Mauney, Carlos Estrada

Invention Types: Medical Device

Research Areas: Neonatology/Pediatric, Regenerative Medicine, Surgery/Wound Healing, Otolaryngology/Audiology

Keywords: Tissue Engineering

For More Information Contact:  Chou, Jennifer


Invention Description:

Long-gap esophageal defects including esophageal atresia, strictures, esophageal cancer and reflux esophagitis disease are often repaired with gastric pull-up, colonic interposition or grafts made of natural and synthetic materials. Current approaches fail to restore optimal esophageal functionality due to the lack of biomaterials able to prevent complications such as lack of proper motility, incomplete regeneration as well as graft contractures and perforations.||

Drs. Joshua Mauney and Carlos Estrada developed a three-dimensional (3D) silk fibroin (SF) scaffold platform for hollow organ repair that provides desirable biomechanical properties including structural strength, elasticity, biodegradability, and biocompatibility. The team demonstrated that the SF scaffold successfully regenerate tissue after esophagoplasty in different animal models. The final goal is to develop 3D biodegradable scaffolds for hollow organ repair that would be able to mimic original healthy tissue by using a bilayer consisting in a porous layer that allow ingrowth of surrounding host tissue and an annealed film layer providing a fluid-tight seal for retention of hollow organs contents.


A silk-based scaffold for tissue regeneration of esophageal defects, with potential uses for urethra, trachea or other hollow organs, as well as wound healing (i.e., burns and staple reinforcement).

Competitive Advantages:

• Provides desirables biomechanical properties such as strength, elasticity and biodegradability

• Does not cause an immunogenic response

• Silk fibroin scaffold provides a porous layer that allows ingrowth of host tissue while a second layer acts as a fluid-tight seal

• Potential application for wound healing and other hollow organs such as esophagus, trachea, bladder and urethra

Business Opportunity:

Licensing agreement or sponsored research

Key Publications: Sack BS, Mauney JR, Estrada CR. Silk Fibroin Scaffolds for Urologic Tissue Engineering. Curr Urol Rep. 2016 Feb; 17(2):16. PMID: 26801192.

Algarrahi K, Franck D, Ghezzi CE, Cristofaro V, Yang X, Sullivan MP, Chung YG, Affas S, Jennings R, Kaplan DL, Estrada CR, Mauney JR. Acellular bi-layer silk fibroin scaffolds support functional tissue regeneration in a rat model of onlay esophagoplasty. Biomaterials. 2015 Jun; 53:149-59. PMID: 25890715; PMCID: PMC4405663

Franck D, Chung YG, Coburn J, Kaplan DL, Estrada CR, Mauney JR. In vitro evaluation of bi-layer silk fibroin scaffolds for gastrointestinal tissue engineering. J Tissue Eng. 2014; 5:2041731414556849. PMID: 25396043; PMCID: PMC4228923.

IPStatus: Pat. in Prep.