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Issue 20, 2016
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Three-dimensional culture of small-diameter vascular grafts

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In this review we analyze a representative sample of efforts to engineer three dimensional small-diameter (<6 mm) vascular grafts, concentrating on biomaterial substrates, cellular choices, and biomechanical stimulation. Natural or synthetic scaffolds for vascular engineering need to mimic the natural extracellular matrix microenvironment, maintain physiological mechanical properties, be biocompatible and cell adhesive, and control cellular structure and function. Additionally, multicellular culture with stem cells that are highly proliferative and differentiable should be used to better recapitulate native vasculature. Fluid flow and co-culture of perivascular and endothelial cells produce synergistic effects. Also, fluid flow prevents cell disengagement and facilitates appropriate cellular orientation, making bioreactors an auspicious addition to graft culturing techniques. Overall, stem cells, co-culture, and pulsatile flow are important for the rapid and successful development of a viable small-diameter tissue engineered vascular graft for in vivo use.

Graphical abstract: Three-dimensional culture of small-diameter vascular grafts

  • This article is part of the themed collection: Stem Cells
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Publication details

The article was received on 06 Jan 2016, accepted on 23 Feb 2016 and first published on 24 Feb 2016

Article type: Review Article
DOI: 10.1039/C6TB00024J
J. Mater. Chem. B, 2016,4, 3443-3453

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    Three-dimensional culture of small-diameter vascular grafts

    M. B. Elliott and S. Gerecht, J. Mater. Chem. B, 2016, 4, 3443
    DOI: 10.1039/C6TB00024J

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