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Prenatally engineered autologous amniotic fluid stem cell-based heart valves in the fetal circulation


Abstract

Prenatal heart valve interventions aiming at the early and systematic correction of congenital cardiac malformations represent a promising treatment option in maternal-fetal care. However, definite fetal valve replacements require growing implants adaptive to fetal and postnatal development. The presented study investigates the fetal implantation of prenatally engineered living autologous cell-based heart valves. Autologous amniotic fluid cells (AFCs) were isolated from pregnant sheep between 122 and 128 days of gestation via transuterine sonographic sampling. Stented trileaflet heart valves were fabricated from biodegradable PGA-P4HB composite matrices (n = 9) and seeded with AFCs in vitro. Within the same intervention, tissue engineered heart valves (TEHVs) and unseeded controls were implanted orthotopically into the pulmonary position using an in-utero closed-heart hybrid approach. The transapical valve deployments were successful in all animals with acute survival of 77.8% of fetuses. TEHV in-vivo functionality was assessed using echocardiography as well as angiography. Fetuses were harvested up to 1 week after implantation representing a birth-relevant gestational age. TEHVs showed in vivo functionality with intact valvular integrity and absence of thrombus formation. The presented approach may serve as an experimental basis for future human prenatal cardiac interventions using fully biodegradable autologous cell-based living materials.

Abstract

Prenatal heart valve interventions aiming at the early and systematic correction of congenital cardiac malformations represent a promising treatment option in maternal-fetal care. However, definite fetal valve replacements require growing implants adaptive to fetal and postnatal development. The presented study investigates the fetal implantation of prenatally engineered living autologous cell-based heart valves. Autologous amniotic fluid cells (AFCs) were isolated from pregnant sheep between 122 and 128 days of gestation via transuterine sonographic sampling. Stented trileaflet heart valves were fabricated from biodegradable PGA-P4HB composite matrices (n = 9) and seeded with AFCs in vitro. Within the same intervention, tissue engineered heart valves (TEHVs) and unseeded controls were implanted orthotopically into the pulmonary position using an in-utero closed-heart hybrid approach. The transapical valve deployments were successful in all animals with acute survival of 77.8% of fetuses. TEHV in-vivo functionality was assessed using echocardiography as well as angiography. Fetuses were harvested up to 1 week after implantation representing a birth-relevant gestational age. TEHVs showed in vivo functionality with intact valvular integrity and absence of thrombus formation. The presented approach may serve as an experimental basis for future human prenatal cardiac interventions using fully biodegradable autologous cell-based living materials.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Cardiovascular Surgery
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Division of Surgical Research
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Children's Hospital Zurich > Medical Clinic
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Diagnostic and Interventional Radiology
04 Faculty of Medicine > Institute of Pharmacology and Toxicology
07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Pharmacology and Toxicology

04 Faculty of Medicine > Institute of Biomedical Engineering
04 Faculty of Medicine > Institute for Regenerative Medicine (IREM)
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
170 Ethics
610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:2012
Deposited On:12 Sep 2012 14:38
Last Modified:15 Dec 2016 14:48
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:0142-9612
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biomaterials.2011.11.087
PubMed ID:22421386

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