Rotator cuff tendon tears often require large tensions for repair [1] and these tensions are associated with poor outcomes including rerupture [2]. To address this, repairs are often augmented with collagen-based scaffolds. Microbial cellulose, produced by A. xylinum as a laminar non-woven matrix, is another candidate for repair augmentation [3]. An ideal augmentation scaffold would shield the repair site from damaging loads as they change throughout the healing process. Although the initial mechanical properties of clinically used scaffolds have been well characterized [4–6], their mechanical behavior following implantation is not known. As a result, the role of these scaffolds throughout the healing process remains unknown. Therefore, the objective of this study is to characterize the mechanical behavior of existing collagen-based scaffolds and a new, microbial cellulose scaffold over time using an in vivo model. We hypothesize that: 1) collagen-based scaffolds will show decreased stiffness (1a) and suture pullout loads (1b) over time when compared to initial values while the microbial cellulose scaffold will not; and 2) the collagen-based scaffolds will have decreased stiffness (2a) and suture pullout loads (2b) when compared to the new, microbial cellulose scaffold at all timepoints.

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