RTI Biologics Inc. (RTI) (Nasdaq: RTIX), the Florida-based processor of orthopedic, dental, hernia and other biologic implants, has donated Matrix HD™ sterilized dermis allografts to use in limb salvage procedures for victims of the recent natural disasters in Haiti.

A group of surgeons from Barry University and Mercy Hospital in Miami, Fla., will leave this week to treat patients in Haiti, many of whom will need the Matrix HD™ allografts to save their arms or legs from amputation.

“These grafts from RTI are very important because we do not have the surgical equipment or facilities available to harvest autografts from the patients, and we can apply these allografts without general anesthesia,” said Dr. Thomas J. Merrill, D.P.M., professor of surgery for the School of Podiatric Medicine at Barry University and podiatric reconstructive surgeon for Mercy Hospital. “The Matrix HD allografts are durable and will withstand the conditions in Haiti right now. These grafts will save these patients’ limbs.”

Matrix HD is acellular human dermis processed using the Tutoplast® Tissue Sterilization Process. The allograft dermis is collagenous connective tissue with three-dimensional intertwined fibers that retain the multidirectional and mechanical properties of native dermis. Matrix HD supports cellular revascularization and repopulation by the host tissue and has been used in a variety of applications, including sports medicine, urology, breast reconstruction and other surgical specialties.

“RTI is pleased to donate Matrix HD to treat these patients,” said Roger W. Rose, executive vice president for RTI. “We commend and support our surgeon customers in their contributions to this much needed cause and their efforts to use Matrix HD to help people affected by the earthquake in Haiti.”

Allograft is tissue surgically transplanted from one person to another. Most allograft tissue is recovered surgically after someone dies; the donor must have consented to the donation before death or the donor’s family must consent after death. Tissue transplantation can have many benefits for recipients including repairing tissue defects caused by trauma or disease, restoring mobility and regaining independence in daily activities.

Allografts are used as an alternative to synthetic and metal implants. However, unlike synthetic or metal implants, allografts are a natural and biocompatible scaffold, allowing the recipient’s body to remodel it into his or her own tissue over time. Using allograft tissue rather than an autograft – or tissue from one’s own body – eliminates a second surgical site, allowing the recipient to avoid additional pain, risk and a possible longer hospital stay.

RTI honors the gift of tissue donation by treating the tissue with respect, by finding new ways to use the tissue to help patients and by helping as many patients as possible from each donation.

About RTI Biologics Inc.

RTI Biologics Inc. is a leading provider of sterile biological implants for surgeries around the world with a commitment to advancing science, safety and innovation. RTI prepares human donated tissue and bovine tissue for transplantation through extensive testing and screening, precision shaping and proprietary, validated sterilization processes. These allograft and xenograft implants are used in orthopedic, dental, hernia and other specialty surgeries.

RTI’s innovations continuously raise the bar of science and safety for biologics – from being the first company to offer precision-tooled bone implants and assembled technology to maximize each gift of donation, to inventing validated sterilization processes that include viral inactivation steps. Two such processes – the BioCleanse® Tissue Sterilization Process and the Tutoplast® Tissue Sterilization Process – have a combined record of more than two million implants distributed with zero incidence of allograft-associated infection. These processes have been validated by tissue type to penetrate tissue, inactivate or remove viruses and a wide range of organisms using worst-case testing and maintain tissue biocompatibility and functionality.

RTI’s worldwide corporate headquarters are located in Alachua, Fla., with international locations in Neunkirchen, Germany, and Aix-en-Provence, France. The company is accredited in the U.S. by the American Association of Tissue Banks.

Copyright Business Wire 2010