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Open Access Design of Biomimetic Vascular Grafts With Magnetic Endothelial Patterning

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The development of small diameter vascular grafts with a controlled pluricellular organization is still needed for effective vascular tissue engineering. Here, we describe a technological approach combining a tubular scaffold and magnetically labeled cells to create a pluricellular and organized vascular graft, the endothelialization of which could be monitored by MRI prior to transplantation. A novel type of scaffold was developed with a tubular geometry and a porous bulk structure enabling the seeding of cells in the scaffold pores. A homogeneous distribution of human mesenchymal stem cells in the macroporous structure was obtained by seeding the freeze-dried scaffold with the cell suspension. The efficient covering of the luminal surface of the tube was then made possible thanks to the implementation of a magnetic-based patterning technique. Human endothelial cells or endothelial progenitors were magnetically labeled with iron oxide nanoparticles and successfully attracted to the 2-mm lumen where they attached and formed a continuous endothelium. The combination of imaging modalities [fluorescence imaging, histology, and 3D magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)] evidenced the integrity of the vascular construct. In particular, the observation of different cell organizations in a vascular scaffold within the range of resolution of single cells by 4.7 T MRI is reported.

Keywords: Biomimetic material; Endothelial cells; Endothelialization; Iron oxide nanoparticles; Magnetic patterning; Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI); Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs); Scaffold

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: November 5, 2013

More about this publication?
  • Cell Transplantation publishes original, peer-reviewed research and review articles on the subject of cell transplantation and its application to human diseases. To ensure high-quality contributions from all areas of transplantation, separate section editors and editorial boards have been established. Articles deal with a wide range of topics including physiological, medical, preclinical, tissue engineering, and device-oriented aspects of transplantation of nervous system, endocrine, growth factor-secreting, bone marrow, epithelial, endothelial, and genetically engineered cells, among others. Basic clinical studies and immunological research papers are also featured. To provide complete coverage of this revolutionary field, Cell Transplantation will report on relevant technological advances, and ethical and regulatory considerations of cell transplants. Cell Transplantation is now an Open Access journal starting with volume 18 in 2009, and therefore there will be an inexpensive publication charge, which is dependent on the number of pages, in addition to the charge for color figures. This will allow work to be disseminated to a wider audience and also entitle the corresponding author to a free PDF, as well as prepublication of an unedited version of the manuscript.

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