Endothelium properties of a tissue-engineered blood vessel for small-diameter vascular reconstruction

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Purpose: A tissue-engineered blood vessel (TEBV) produced in vitro by the self-assembly method was developed in our laboratory for the replacement of small-diameter blood vessels. The interior of this vessel is covered by an endothelium. The aim of the present study was to evaluate whether the endothelial layer would make a favorable contribution at the time of implantation of the TEBV by investigating in vitro the hemocompatible properties of the endothelial cells covering its interior. Methods: The secretion of the von Willebrand factor (vWF) and expression of thrombomodulin by the endothelium were assessed, and the adhesive molecules E-selectin and intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) were quantified as a function of maturation time. To evaluate the functional response of the endothelium on injury, the cellular response to physiological stimulatory factors (thrombin and lipopolysaccharide [LPS]) was analyzed. Results: The endothelial cells formed a confluent monolayer displaying favorable hemocompatible properties (78% ± 10% of cells expressing thrombomodulin with only 12 ± 3 mU/106 cells of vWF secreted over a 2-hour period), which acquired their full expression after a culture period of 4 days. Moreover, pro-adhesive properties toward inflammatory cells were not observed. The cells were also able to respond to physiological-stimulating agents (thrombin and LPS) and demonstrated a statistically significant overexpression of the corresponding molecules under the conditions tested. Conclusions: These results indicate that the endothelium of the tissue-engineered blood vessel produced by the self-assembly approach displays advantageous qualities with regard to the vessel's future implantation as a small-diameter vascular prosthesis.




Rémy-Zolghadri, M., Laganière, J., Oligny, J. F., Germain, L., & Auger, F. A. (2004). Endothelium properties of a tissue-engineered blood vessel for small-diameter vascular reconstruction. Journal of Vascular Surgery, 39(3), 613–620. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jvs.2003.08.007

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