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Tissue engineering of human heart valve leaflets: a novel bioreactor for a strain-based conditioning approach


Mol, A; Driessen, N J B; Rutten, M C M; Hoerstrup, S P; Bouten, C V C; Baaijens, F P T (2005). Tissue engineering of human heart valve leaflets: a novel bioreactor for a strain-based conditioning approach. Annals of Biomedical Engineering, 33(12):1778-1788.

Abstract

Current mechanical conditioning approaches for heart valve tissue engineering concentrate on mimicking the opening and closing behavior of the leaflets, either or not in combination with tissue straining. This study describes a novel approach by mimicking only the diastolic phase of the cardiac cycle, resulting in tissue straining. A novel, yet simplified, bioreactor system was developed for this purpose by applying a dynamic pressure difference over a closed tissue engineered valve, thereby inducing dynamic strains within the leaflets. Besides the use of dynamic strains, the developing leaflet tissues were exposed to pre-strain induced by the use of a stented geometry. To demonstrate the feasibility of this strain-based conditioning approach, human heart valve leaflets were engineered and their mechanical behavior evaluated. The actual dynamic strain magnitude in the leaflets over time was estimated using numerical analyses. Preliminary results showed superior tissue formation and non-linear tissue-like mechanical properties in the strained valves when compared to non-loaded tissue strips. In conclusion, the strain-based conditioning approach, using both pre-strain and dynamic strains, offers new possibilities for bioreactor design and optimization of tissue properties towards a tissue-engineered aortic human heart valve replacement.

Abstract

Current mechanical conditioning approaches for heart valve tissue engineering concentrate on mimicking the opening and closing behavior of the leaflets, either or not in combination with tissue straining. This study describes a novel approach by mimicking only the diastolic phase of the cardiac cycle, resulting in tissue straining. A novel, yet simplified, bioreactor system was developed for this purpose by applying a dynamic pressure difference over a closed tissue engineered valve, thereby inducing dynamic strains within the leaflets. Besides the use of dynamic strains, the developing leaflet tissues were exposed to pre-strain induced by the use of a stented geometry. To demonstrate the feasibility of this strain-based conditioning approach, human heart valve leaflets were engineered and their mechanical behavior evaluated. The actual dynamic strain magnitude in the leaflets over time was estimated using numerical analyses. Preliminary results showed superior tissue formation and non-linear tissue-like mechanical properties in the strained valves when compared to non-loaded tissue strips. In conclusion, the strain-based conditioning approach, using both pre-strain and dynamic strains, offers new possibilities for bioreactor design and optimization of tissue properties towards a tissue-engineered aortic human heart valve replacement.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Division of Surgical Research
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:2005
Deposited On:23 Mar 2010 11:18
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 13:51
Publisher:Springer
ISSN:0090-6964
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1007/s10439-005-8025-4
PubMed ID:16389526

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