The effect of source animal age upon extracellular matrix scaffold properties

Stephen Tottey, Scott A. Johnson, Peter M. Crapo, Janet E. Reing, Li Zhang, Hongbin Jiang, Christopher J. Medberry, Brandon Reines, Stephen F. Badylak*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

98 Scopus citations


Biologic scaffold materials composed of mammalian extracellular matrix (ECM) are commonly used for the repair and reconstruction of injured tissues. An important, but unexplored variable of biologic scaffolds is the age of the animal from which the ECM is prepared. The objective of the present study was to compare the structural, mechanical, and compositional properties of small intestinal submucosa (SIS)-ECM harvested from pigs that differed only in age. Degradation product bioactivity of these ECM materials was also examined. Results showed that there are distinct differences in each of these variables among the various age source ECM scaffolds. The strength and growth factors content of ECM from 3-week-old animals is less than that of ECM harvested from 12, 26 or >52-week-old animals. The elastic modulus of SIS-ECM for 3 week and >52-week-old source was less than that of the 12 and 26 week source. Degradation products from all age source ECMs were chemotactic for perivascular stem cells, with the 12 week source the most potent, while the oldest source caused the greatest increase in proliferation. In summary, distinct differences exist in the mechanical, structural, and biologic properties of SIS-ECM harvested from different aged animals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)128-136
Number of pages9
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Age/ageing
  • Bioactivity
  • ECM (extracellular matrix)
  • Growth factors
  • Mechanical properties
  • Stem cell


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