Falkner, E. and Wild, C. (2008): Clinical application of Tissue Engineering: An overview of International and Austrian Areas of Research with a critical analysis of selected applications . LBI-HTA Projektbericht 013.
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Background: In the past 15 years, important innovations have been made in biomedical and (molecular-) biology research domains by combining cell biology techniques for the guided generation of tissue. The term `Tissue En-gineering´ (TE) was created for these applications, which beside of basic re-search interest are of clinical relevance. Concerning the high costs, critics demand valid proof for the many promises made.
International legislation on clinical TE usage varies, harmonisations are in force just for certain aspects or are discussed at the moment.
Method: Chosen method for the generation of this report is the systematic literature review with special regard to `Grey Literature´, which in this con-text stands for publications not available by regular book and journal distri-bution. Examples for Grey Literature are conference proceedings, scripts, preprints, catalogues, web presence and papers out of the university settings not published yet.
Results: The investigations uncovered beside a large amount of TE experi-ments in varying states of research just a surprisingly small number of clini-cal TE studies or case studies documenting actual clinical usage of TE methods in human medicine. Austria-specific TE topics, research groups, bio banks and the generation of TE clusters could be documented.
Discussion: Tissue Engineering (TE) is defined as the biomedical application of cells, in the majority of cases in combination with a growth and differen-tiation stimulating matrix for tissue regeneration purposes in patients with varying diseases or injuries. Definitions overlap with `Regenerative Medi-cine´ (RM), `Future Medicine´ and `Advanced Therapies´. Examples for clinical application include chondrocyte implantation, skin substitutes, repair of bone defects and cell seeding of cardiovascular stents.
Objective is a summary of the state of the art of TE research with attention to clinical relevance, the documentation of Austrian research clusters and bio banks. Furthermore an evaluation of selected fields of application regarding costs and benefits for patients is made.
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