To extend the preservation of donor hearts beyond the current 4–6 h, this paper explores heart cryopreservation by vitrification—cryogenic storage in a glass‐like state. While organ vitrification is made possible by using cryoprotective agents (CPA) that inhibit ice during cooling, failure occurs during convective rewarming due to slow and non‐uniform rewarming which causes ice crystallization and/or cracking. Here an alternative, “nanowarming”, which uses silica‐coated iron oxide nanoparticles (sIONPs) perfusion loaded through the vasculature is explored, that allows a radiofrequency coil to rewarm the organ quickly and uniformly to avoid convective failures. Nanowarming has been applied to cells and tissues, and a proof of principle study suggests it is possible in the heart, but proper physical and biological characterization especially in organs is still lacking. Here, using a rat heart model, controlled machine perfusion loading and unloading of CPA and sIONPs, cooling to a vitrified state, and fast and uniform nanowarming without crystallization or cracking is demonstrated. Further, nanowarmed hearts maintain histologic appearance and endothelial integrity superior to convective rewarming and indistinguishable from CPA load/unload control hearts while showing some promising organ‐level (electrical) functional activity. This work demonstrates physically successful heart vitrification and nanowarming and that biological outcomes can be expected to improve by reducing or eliminating CPA toxicity during loading and unloading.
Vitrification can dramatically increase the storage of viable biomaterials in the cryogenic state for years. Unfortunately, vitrified systems ≥3 mL like large tissues and organs, cannot currently be rewarmed sufficiently rapidly or uniformly by convective approaches to avoid ice crystallization or cracking failures. A new volumetric rewarming technology entitled “nanowarming” addresses this problem by using radiofrequency excited iron oxide nanoparticles to rewarm vitrified systems rapidly and uniformly. Here, for the first time, successful recovery of a rat kidney from the vitrified state using nanowarming, is shown. First, kidneys are perfused via the renal artery with a cryoprotective cocktail (CPA) and silica‐coated iron oxide nanoparticles (sIONPs). After cooling at −40 °C min−1in a controlled rate freezer, microcomputed tomography (µCT) imaging is used to verify the distribution of the sIONPs and the vitrified state of the kidneys. By applying a radiofrequency field to excite the distributed sIONPs, the vitrified kidneys are nanowarmed at a mean rate of 63.7 °C min−1. Experiments and modeling show the avoidance of both ice crystallization and cracking during these processes. Histology and confocal imaging show that nanowarmed kidneys are dramatically better than convective rewarming controls. This work suggests that kidney nanowarming holds tremendous promise for transplantation.more » « less
- Award ID(s):
- NSF-PAR ID:
- Publisher / Repository:
- Wiley Blackwell (John Wiley & Sons)
- Date Published:
- Journal Name:
- Advanced Science
- Medium: X
- Sponsoring Org:
- National Science Foundation
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Cryopreservation technology allows long‐term banking of biological systems. However, a major challenge to cryopreserving organs remains in the rewarming of large volumes (>3 mL), where mechanical stress and ice formation during convective warming cause severe damage. Nanowarming technology presents a promising solution to rewarm organs rapidly and uniformly via inductive heating of magnetic nanoparticles (IONPs) preloaded by perfusion into the organ vasculature. This use requires the IONPs to be produced at scale, heat quickly, be nontoxic, remain stable in cryoprotective agents (CPAs), and be washed out easily after nanowarming. Nanowarming of cells and blood vessels using a mesoporous silica‐coated iron oxide nanoparticle (msIONP) in VS55, a common CPA, has been previously demonstrated. However, production of msIONPs is a lengthy, multistep process and provides only mg Fe per batch. Here, a new microporous silica‐coated iron oxide nanoparticle (sIONP) that can be produced in as little as 1 d while scaling up to 1.4 g Fe per batch is presented. sIONP high heating, biocompatibility, and stability in VS55 is also verified, and the ability to perfusion load and washout sIONPs from a rat kidney as evidenced by advanced imaging and ICP‐OES is demonstrated.
Banking cryopreserved organs could transform transplantation into a planned procedure that more equitably reaches patients regardless of geographical and time constraints. Previous organ cryopreservation attempts have failed primarily due to ice formation, but a promising alternative is vitrification, or the rapid cooling of organs to a stable, ice-free, glass-like state. However, rewarming of vitrified organs can similarly fail due to ice crystallization if rewarming is too slow or cracking from thermal stress if rewarming is not uniform. Here we use “nanowarming,” which employs alternating magnetic fields to heat nanoparticles within the organ vasculature, to achieve both rapid and uniform warming, after which the nanoparticles are removed by perfusion. We show that vitrified kidneys can be cryogenically stored (up to 100 days) and successfully recovered by nanowarming to allow transplantation and restore life-sustaining full renal function in nephrectomized recipients in a male rat model. Scaling this technology may one day enable organ banking for improved transplantation.
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