Archives of Gynecology and Obstetrics

, Volume 297, Issue 5, pp 1265–1270 | Cite as

Biologic meshes and synthetic meshes in cancer patients: a double-edged sword: differences in production of IL-6 and IL-12 caused by acellular dermal matrices in human immune cells

  • Maria Margarete Karsten
  • Sabine Enders
  • Julia Knabl
  • Verena Kirn
  • Peter Düwell
  • Brigitte Rack
  • Jens-Uwe Blohmer
  • Doris Mayr
  • Darius Dian
Gynecologic Oncology



In 2005, Breuing et al. first described the use of acellular dermal matrices (ADMs) in breast cancer patients. ADMs are assumed to be safe to use in an oncologic setting, but data from controlled studies are still needed. Here, we investigate the effects of ADMs on the production of interleukin (IL)-6 and IL-12, key regulators of immune suppression and activation.


Strattice (ST), CollaMend (CM), and Biodesign (BD) biologic meshes and TiLoop, a synthetic mesh (TL), were used in this study. We isolated myeloid dendritic cells (MDCs), untouched plasmacytoid dendritic cells (pDCs), naïve B cells, and CD8+ T cells and co-cultured these cells with either the biologic meshes or TL. As positive controls, we used CpG ODN 2216 or lipopolysaccharide (LPS). The cytokine concentrations of IL-12p70 and IL-6 were determined after 7 days using sandwich ELISA sets.


There were highly significant differences between the ADMs and TL in terms of their ability to stimulate immunologic responses. IL-6 expression was significantly increased in B cells (p = 0.0006131) and T cells (p = 0.00418) when comparing TL and ADMs. We also identified significant differences in IL-12 production by B cells (p = 0.0166) and T cells (p = 0.003636) when comparing TL and ADMs.


Despite the assumed lack of an immunological response to ADMs, in our experimental study, human immune cells reacted with significantly different cytokine profiles. These findings may have implications for the potential activation or suppression of effector cells in cancer patients and could explain some of the post clinical post surgical signs of ADMS like skin rush and seroma.


Acellular dermal matrices Interleukin-6 Interleukin-12 IL-6 IL-12 Breast cancer 



This study was presented in part in poster format at the 2013 Annual Meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology, May 31–June 4, Chicago, IL.

Author contributions

MK: conceptualization, data curation, funding acquisition, investigation, project administration, writing original draft, and supervision. SE: investigation, methodology. JK: writing, review, and editing. VK: methodology. PD: investigation. BR: funding acquisition, methodology. JB: writing and review. DM: investigation and conceptualization. DD: conceptualization and supervision.


The study was supported by a Grant from the Klinik für Frauenheilkunde, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München, München, Deutschland.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors have no conflicts of interest to declare.

Ethical approval

The study was approved by the ethics committee of the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München.

Informed consent

All study participants gave written informed consent for this study.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Klinik für Gynäkologie und BrustzentrumCharité Universitätsmedizin BerlinBerlinGermany
  2. 2.Klinik für FrauenheilkundeLudwig-Maximilians-Universität MünchenMunichGermany
  3. 3.Klinik und Poliklinik für FrauenheilkundeUniversität KölnCologneGermany
  4. 4.Abteilung für klinische PharmakologieLudwig-Maximilians-Universität MünchenMunichGermany
  5. 5.Abteilung für PathologieLudwig-Maximilians-Universität MünchenMunichGermany

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