Macrophage phenotype and remodeling outcomes in response to biologic scaffolds with and without a cellular component

Biomaterials. 2009 Mar;30(8):1482-91. doi: 10.1016/j.biomaterials.2008.11.040. Epub 2009 Jan 1.


Recently, macrophages have been characterized as having an M1 or M2 phenotype based on receptor expression, cytokine and effector molecule production, and function. The effects of macrophage phenotype upon tissue remodeling following the implantation of a biomaterial are largely unknown. The objectives of this study were to determine the effects of a cellular component within an implanted extracellular matrix (ECM) scaffold upon macrophage phenotype, and to determine the relationship between macrophage phenotype and tissue remodeling. Partial-thickness defects in the abdominal wall musculature of Sprague-Dawley rats were repaired with autologous body wall tissue, acellular allogeneic rat body wall ECM, xenogeneic pig urinary bladder tissue, or acellular xenogeneic pig urinary bladder ECM. At 3, 7, 14, and 28 days the host tissue response was characterized using histologic, immunohistochemical, and RT-PCR methods. The acellular test articles were shown to elicit a predominantly M2 type response and resulted in constructive remodeling, while those containing a cellular component, even an autologous cellular component, elicited a predominantly M1 type response and resulted in deposition of dense connective tissue and/or scarring. We conclude that the presence of cellular material within an ECM scaffold modulates the phenotype of the macrophages participating in the host response following implantation, and that the phenotype of the macrophages participating in the host response appears to be related to tissue remodeling outcome.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Nucleus / metabolism
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Indoles
  • Macrophages / cytology*
  • Macrophages / metabolism*
  • Muscle, Skeletal / pathology
  • Phenotype
  • Prosthesis Implantation
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Sus scrofa
  • Tissue Scaffolds*
  • Transplantation, Autologous
  • Transplantation, Heterologous
  • Transplantation, Homologous


  • Indoles
  • DAPI