This study was designed to evaluate the influence of cultured epidermal tissue graft and the administration of transforming growth factor(TGF)-beta3 on maxillary growth in surgically created palatal defects. A total of 155 rats were divided into 2 groups according to surgical timing : postnatal 2 weeks(n=95), 4 weeks(n=40) and control(unoperated) group(n=20). The postnatal 2-week surgical group was subdivided into 3 groups according to repair methods: conventional surgery(Von Langenbeck technique)group(n=23); cultured tissue graft group(n=25); and full thickness skin graft group(n=25). Additionally, recombinant human TGF-beta3 was administered(30ng or 150ng) on collagen matrix in surgically created palatal defects during surgery(9 conventional surgeries, 9 cultured tissue grafts) in 2-week-old rats. The results showed that all types of surgical treatment decreased maxillary growth compared with the control(unoperated) group(p<0.0001). On the other hand, the tissue graft group, whether cultured tissue or grafted skin, contributed to increased maxillary growth(p<0.0001).And exogenous TGF-beta3 might play a role in connective tissue proliferation and new bone generation during wound healing on palatal defects. Our results suggest that grafting cultured epidermis with collagen matrix decreases the scar tension on maxillary growth more than conventional palatal surgery does. Therefore, exogenous TGF-beta3 may contribute to accelerate wound healing on palatal defects.