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This content will become publicly available on October 11, 2024

Title: Biomimetic proteoglycans as a tool to engineer the structure and mechanics of porcine bioprosthetic heart valves

The utility of bioprosthetic heart valves (BHVs) is limited to certain patient populations because of their poor durability compared to mechanical prosthetic valves. Histological analysis of failed porcine BHVs suggests that degeneration of the tissue extracellular matrix (ECM), specifically the loss of proteoglycans and their glycosaminoglycans (GAGs), may lead to impaired mechanical performance, resulting in nucleation and propagation of tears and ultimately failure of the prosthetic. Several strategies have been proposed to address this deterioration, including novel chemical fixatives to stabilize ECM constituents and incorporation of small molecule inhibitors of catabolic enzymes implicated in the degeneration of the BHV ECM. Here, biomimetic proteoglycans (BPGs) were introduced into porcine aortic valves ex vivo and were shown to distribute throughout the valve leaflets. Incorporation of BPGs into the heart valve leaflet increased tissue overall GAG content. The presence of BPGs also significantly increased the micromodulus of the spongiosa layer within the BHV without compromising the chemical fixation process used to sterilize and strengthen the tissue prior to implantation. These findings suggest that a targeted approach for molecularly engineering valve leaflet ECM through the use of BPGs may be a viable way to improve the mechanical behavior and potential durability of BHVs.

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Author(s) / Creator(s):
 ;  ;  ;  
Publisher / Repository:
Wiley Blackwell (John Wiley & Sons)
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Journal of Biomedical Materials Research Part B: Applied Biomaterials
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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