Endothelial cell seeding of a 4-mm I.D. Polyurethane vascular graft


We evaluated the extent (luminal coverage) of the endothelial cell (EC) lining/neointimal development and the thromboresistance of electro-statically EC seeded small diameter ChronoFlex-polyurethane vascular grafts. The evaluation consisted of harvesting autologous, canine jugular vein ECs, electrostatically seeding the polyurethane grafts (4-mm I.D., length = 6 cm) with the harvested ECs, implanting the grafts in a canine femoral artery model for four to six weeks, and excising the grafts for histological and scanning electron microscopy evaluations. Results of the histological evaluation (mid-graft region only) indicated that electrostatic EC seeding led to neointimal development and to minimal to no thrombus formation within the EC seeded grafts. The unseeded control grafts resulted in no neointimal development and substantial thrombus formation on the graft luminal surfaces. Scanning electron microscopy examination demonstrated a mature, confluent endothelium with a "cobblestone" appearance on the EC seeded graft luminal surface after six weeks. We conclude that electrostatic EC seeding enhanced the development of a neointima and reduced the incidence of thrombosis in polyurethane grafts implanted in a canine femoral artery model.

Publication Title

Journal of Biomaterials Applications