Pericardium-based cardiovascular devices are currently bound by a 10-year maximum lifetime due to detrimental calcification and degradation. The goal of this work is to develop a novel synthetic material to create a lasting replacement for malfunctioning or diseased tissue in the cardiovascular system. This study couples poly(propylene fumarate) (PPF) and a natural biomaterial together in an unprecedented hybrid composite and evaluates the composite versus the standard glutaraldehyde-treated tissue. The polymer reinforcement is hypothesized to provide initial physical protection from proteolytic enzymes and degradation, but leave the original collagen and elastin matrix unaltered. The calcification rate and durability of the hybrid material are evaluated in vitro and in an in vivo subdermal animal model. Results demonstrate that PPF is an effective support and leads to significantly less calcium deposition, important metrics when evaluating cardiovascular material. By avoiding chemical crosslinking of the tissue and associated side effects, PPF-reinforced pericardium as a biohybrid material offers a promising potential direction for further development in cardiovascular material alternatives. Eliminating the basis for the majority of cardiovascular prosthetic failures could revolutionize expectations for extent of cardiovascular repair.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biomedical Engineering