Effect of Human Placental Extract Treatment on Random-Pattern Skin Flap Survival in Rats

Jung Woo Kwon, Seung Eun Hong, So Ra Kang, Bo Young Park

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8 Scopus citations


Background: Human placental extract (HPE), prepared from the placentas of healthy, postpartum females, displays various physiological activities, including antioxidative properties. In this study, a dorsal skin flap model was used to investigate the effect of HPE on flap viability in rats. Materials and methods: Forty male Sprague-Dawley rats underwent random-pattern skin flap surgeries. The animals were randomly divided among a control group and three treatment groups (localized injection (LI), 10 mg/kg/d localized HPE injections; low-dose treatment (LT), 10 mg/kg/d systemic HPE injections; high-dose treatment (HT), 40 mg/kg/d systemic HPE injections). Surviving skin flap areas were measured 7 days after surgery and tissue samples were stained with hematoxylin and eosin; vascular endothelial growth factor expression was determined immunohistochemically. To evaluate the antioxidant and antiapoptotic effects of HPE, malondialdehyde, glutathione peroxidase, and caspase-3 levels were examined. Results: Seven days after surgery, HPE-treated animals had significantly reduced necrotic areas, rats receiving the highest HPE dose demonstrated the greatest flap survival. In the HPE groups, the histopathological scores were lower than for the control group. Immunohistochemistry showed markedly more numerous vascular endothelial growth factor-positive cells in the HT group than in the C group. Malondialdehyde levels were significantly lower and glutathione peroxidase levels were higher in the HT group than in the C group. HPE treatment significantly inhibited apoptosis by lowering caspase-3 activity. Conclusions: HPE treatment yielded positive effects on flap survival, due to its antioxidant and antiapoptotic properties. These results suggest a new therapeutic approach for enhancing flap viability and accelerating wound repair.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)304-313
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Investigative Surgery
Issue number4
StatePublished - 19 May 2019

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© 2018, Copyright © 2018 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.


  • antioxidant
  • human placental extract
  • random-pattern flap


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