Publications in Scientific Journals:

H. Bergmeister, P. Böck, M.-T. Kasimir, T. Fleck, F. Fitzal, W. Husinsky, M. Mittlböck, H.G. Stöhr, U. Losert, E. Wolner, M. Grabenwöger:
"Effect of laser perforation on the remodeling of a cellular matrix grafts";
Journal of Biomedical Materials Research Part B: Applied Biomaterials, 74B (2005), Issue 1; 495 - 503.

English abstract:
Autologous cells migrate only slightly into acellular matrix grafts. This study was
carried out in small-diameter, allogeneic matrix grafts to investigate the effects on cell
repopulation and remodeling caused by increased wall porosity induced by laser perforation.
Allogeneic ovine carotid arteries were decellularized by dye-mediated photooxidation (Photofix
TM). Matrix grafts (10 cm 4 mm i.d.) were perforated with holes of 50 m diameter at
a density of 50 holes/cm2 using a Ti-sapphire laser. The grafts were implanted in the carotid
arteries of 10 sheep and were compared to nonperforated grafts implanted contralaterally.
The prostheses were retrieved after 6 weeks or 3 or 6 months following implantation and were
evaluated by histologic examination, immunohistochemical staining, and scanning electron
microscopy. All grafts, except one of the perforated specimens, remained patent. Perforated
implants, examined at 6 weeks, showed faster recellularization with endothelial cells than did
the corresponding contralateral controls. Perforated grafts, examined at 6 months, showed a
significantly thicker neointima and clear signs of neovascularization: endothelial cells, basal
lamina, elastic fibers, circular and longitudinally orientated smooth muscle cells in comparison
to nonperforated specimens. Repopulation of the decellularized matrix with host cells was
higher in the perforated than in the nonperforated prostheses. These results suggest that the
increased matrix porosity induced by laser perforation promotes graft remodeling and
reconstitution with host cells. 2005 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Biomed Mater Res Part B: Appl Biomater
74B: 495-503, 2005
Keywords: decellularized matrix; small-diameter vascular prostheses; laser perforation;
sheep; neointima differentiation; remodeling

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