Animal models for basic and translational research in reconstructive transplantation

Gerald Brandacher, Johanna Grahammer, Robert Sucher, Wei Ping Andrew Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Reconstructive transplantation represents a bona fide option for select patients with devastating tissue loss, which could better restore the appearance, anatomy, and function than any other conventional treatment currently available. Despite favorable outcomes, broad clinical application of reconstructive transplantation is limited by the potential side effects of chronic multidrug immunosuppression. Thus, any reconstructive measures to improve these non-life-threatening conditions must address a delicate balance of risks and benefits. Today, several exciting novel therapeutic strategies, such as the implementation of cellular therapies including bone marrow or stem cells that integrate the concepts of immune regulation with those of nerve regeneration, are on the horizon. The development of reliable and reproducible small andlarge animal models is essential for the study of the unique immunological and biological aspects of vascularized composite allografts and to translate such novel immunoregulatory and tolerance-inducing strategies and therapeutic concepts from the bench to bedside. This review provides an overview of the multitude of small and largeanimal models that have been particularly designed for basicand translational research related to reconstructive transplantation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)39-50
Number of pages12
JournalBirth Defects Research Part C - Embryo Today: Reviews
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2012


  • Animal model
  • Basic science
  • Reconstructive transplantation
  • Translational research

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Embryology
  • Developmental Biology


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