Abstract 2052: Long term Patency of Decellularized Vascular Grafts in a Canine Model
Cryopreserved and synthetic vascular conduits have limitations to their widespread adoption while the demand for suitable alternatives to native vascular conduits will increase. Tissue engineering (TE) may produce the next generation of biological conduits, but long culture times and poor mechanics have limited clinical implementation. Therefore, we examined the utility of a novel TE graft which has excellent mechanics and requires less culture time in a canine model of peripheral and coronary bypass surgery.
Methods Allogeneic cells were cultured in vitro to secrete extracellular matrix proteins in a tubular configuration and were removed, leaving mechanically robust conduits. These were seeded with autologous endothelial cells and implanted into the canine carotid or coronary circulation. Angiography, ultrasound, and computed tomography were used to assess patency and dilatation.
Results Mongrel dogs (n = 7) underwent successful implantation of a TE graft as either a carotid or coronary bypass. Angiography of the carotid grafts revealed patency at 3 months with no significant dilatation. Ultrasound confirmed patency at 9 months. Computed tomography demonstrated patency of the coronary bypass graft at 30 days post-implantation with no significant dilatation.
Conclusion Decellularized TE grafts are available “off-the-shelf,” and after seeding with autologous endothelium, are functional for at least 9 months in a large animal model. Short and long-term patency is demonstrated with no aneurysmal dilatation. This novel technology may provide vascular conduits for patients undergoing cardiovascular bypass.