SkinDot: A modified full-skin transplantation technique

C. Ottoman, G. Buntrock, K. Gatz, B. Hartmann, G. Aarabi, M. Kaschwich, M. Kleemann, A. Bayer*

*Corresponding author for this work


Existing epidermal transplantation procedures applied in burn surgery or wound treatment, such as mesh grafting or the Meek method, do not lead to a restoration of all the skin layers. Dermal skin layers are indispensable in ensuring the quality and function of the transplanted skin as a frictional surface and a carrier of skin appendages such as hair, sweat glands, and sebaceous glands, as well as nerve receptors for detecting pressure, vibration, and temperature. Because of the restricted skin surface area that can be provided by the donor, full-skin transplants cannot be transplanted over a large area. Cultured skin procedures, based on skin cells cultivated in a laboratory, have not yet reached a stage of development where a complex full epidermal transplantation is possible. In particular, the introduction of skin appendages with a functional cell-to-cell communication has not been observed thus far in cultivated skin. Based on the Reverdin transplantation method, in which concave skin islands with epidermal and dermal parts are transplanted, Davis in 1910 described the transplantation of multiple 2−5 mm sized full-skin islands as a new method for the treatment of skin lesions. Further modifying this 100-year-old procedure, we developed a miniaturization and automation of the Davis transplantation method that started in 2011 and called it “SkinDot”. In the following article we describe the effectiveness of the full-skin island transplant procedure in two patients. The transplantation of single 2−3 mm full-skin islands results in a full-skin equivalent without any limits on donor area and with a reduced donor morbidity.

Original languageEnglish
Article number151454
JournalAnnals of Anatomy
Publication statusPublished - 05.2020


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