Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine

, Volume 16, Issue 4, pp 365–384 | Cite as

Overview of Urethral Reconstruction by Tissue Engineering: Current Strategies, Clinical Status and Future Direction

  • Zahra Rashidbenam
  • Mohd Hafidzul Jasman
  • Pezhman Hafez
  • Guan Hee Tan
  • Eng Hong Goh
  • Xeng Inn Fam
  • Christopher Chee Kong Ho
  • Zulkifli Md Zainuddin
  • Reynu Rajan
  • Fatimah Mohd Nor
  • Mohamad Aznan Shuhaili
  • Nik Ritza Kosai
  • Farrah Hani Imran
  • Min Hwei NgEmail author
Review Article



Urinary tract is subjected to a variety of disorders such as urethral stricture, which often develops as a result of scarring process. Urethral stricture can be treated by urethral dilation and urethrotomy; but in cases of long urethral strictures, substitution urethroplasty with genital skin and buccal mucosa grafts is the only option. However a number of complications such as infection as a result of hair growth in neo-urethra, and stone formation restrict the application of those grafts. Therefore, tissue engineering techniques recently emerged as an alternative approach, aiming to overcome those restrictions. The aim of this review is to provide a comprehensive coverage on the strategies employed and the translational status of urethral tissue engineering over the past years and to propose a combinatory strategy for the future of urethral tissue engineering.


Data collection was based on the key articles published in English language in years between 2006 and 2018 using the searching terms of urethral stricture and tissue engineering on PubMed database.


Differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells into urothelial and smooth muscle cells to be used for urologic application does not offer any advantage over autologous urothelial and smooth muscle cells. Among studied scaffolds, synthetic scaffolds with proper porosity and mechanical strength is the best option to be used for urethral tissue engineering.


Hypoxia-preconditioned mesenchymal stem cells in combination with autologous cells seeded on a pre-vascularized synthetic and biodegradable scaffold can be said to be the best combinatory strategy in engineering of human urethra.


Scaffold Tissue engineering Urethral stricture Urethral reconstruction 



This review paper was supported by grants from Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (GUP-2017-092 and FF-2017-227).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that there are no financial conflicts of interest regarding the publication of this paper.

Ethical statement

There are no animal and human experiments carried out for this article.


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Copyright information

© The Korean Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine Society 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Zahra Rashidbenam
    • 1
  • Mohd Hafidzul Jasman
    • 2
  • Pezhman Hafez
    • 3
  • Guan Hee Tan
    • 2
  • Eng Hong Goh
    • 2
  • Xeng Inn Fam
    • 2
  • Christopher Chee Kong Ho
    • 4
  • Zulkifli Md Zainuddin
    • 2
  • Reynu Rajan
    • 5
  • Fatimah Mohd Nor
    • 6
  • Mohamad Aznan Shuhaili
    • 5
  • Nik Ritza Kosai
    • 5
  • Farrah Hani Imran
    • 6
  • Min Hwei Ng
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Tissue Engineering CentreUniversiti Kebangsaan Malaysia Medical CentreKuala LumpurMalaysia
  2. 2.Urology Unit, Department of SurgeryUniversiti Kebangsaan Malaysia Medical CentreKuala LumpurMalaysia
  3. 3.Faculty of Medicine and Health ScienceUCSI UniversityKuala LumpurMalaysia
  4. 4.School of MedicineTaylor’s UniversitySubang JayaMalaysia
  5. 5.Minimally Invasive, Upper Gastrointestinal and Bariatric Surgery Unit, Department of SurgeryUniversiti Kebangsaan Malaysia Medical CentreKuala LumpurMalaysia
  6. 6.Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Unit, Department of SurgeryUniversiti Kebangsaan Malaysia Medical CentreKuala LumpurMalaysia

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