Prevascularization of a fibrin-based tissue construct accelerates the formation of functional anastomosis with host vasculature

Xiaofang Chen, Anna S. Aledia, Cyrus M. Ghajar, Craig K. Griffith, Andrew J. Putnam, Christopher C.W. Hughes, Steven George

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

198 Scopus citations

Abstract

One critical obstacle facing tissue engineering is the formation of functional vascular networks that can support tissue survival in vivo. We hypothesized that prevascularizing a tissue construct with networks of well-formed capillaries would accelerate functional anastomosis with the host upon implantation. Fibrin-based tissues were prevascularized with capillary networks by coculturing human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) and fibroblasts in fibrin gels for 1 week. The prevascularized tissue and nonprevascularized controls were implanted subcutaneously onto the dorsal surface of immune-deficient mice and retrieved at days 3, 5, 7 and 14. HUVEC-lined vessels containing red blood cells were evident in the prevascularized tissue by day 5, significantly earlier than nonprevascularized tissues (14 days). Analysis of the HUVEC-lined vessels demonstrated that the number and area of perfused lumens in the prevascularized tissue were significantly larger compared to controls. In addition, collagen deposition and a larger number of proliferating cells were evident in the prevascularized tissue at day 14. Our results demonstrate that prevascularizing a fibrin-based tissue with well-formed capillaries accelerates anastomosis with the host vasculature, and promotes cellular activity consistent with tissue remodeling. Our prevascularization strategy may be useful to design large three-dimensional engineered tissues.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1363-1371
Number of pages9
JournalTissue Engineering - Part A
Volume15
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2009

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Biochemistry
  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Engineering

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