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A riboflavin–ultraviolet light A-crosslinked decellularized heart valve for improved biomechanical properties, stability, and biocompatibility

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Abstract

Tissue-engineered heart valves are a promising alternative to current valve substitutes. As the main scaffold of tissue-engineered heart valves, the decellularized heart valve (DHV) has problems such as biomechanical property damage and rapid degradation. In this study, we applied a photo-crosslinking reaction induced by riboflavin and ultraviolet light A (UVA) in the DHV for improving its biomechanical properties and stability. The results showed that the biomechanical properties of the DHV significantly improved following riboflavin–UVA (R–UVA) crosslinking. Moreover, the R–UVA-crosslinked DHV (R-UV-DHV) showed better resistance to enzymatic degradation in vitro, with significantly higher thermal denaturation temperature compared to that of the untreated DHV, indicating that the stability of the R-UV-DHV improved. Histological staining and scanning electron microscopy showed that the leaflet ultrastructure was preserved better after R–UVA crosslinking compared to a glutaraldehyde-crosslinked DHV. In addition, we found that the R-UV-DHV exhibited excellent human umbilical vein endothelial cell adhesion and cells could readily grow on its surface. In an in vitro anti-calcification experiment, the R-UV-DHV demonstrated non-calcifying properties in a simulated body fluid. Furthermore, the R-UV-DHV showed characteristics of slow degradation, non-calcification, and reduced pro-inflammatory response through a rat subcutaneous implantation model. As a result, R–UVA can effectively crosslink the DHV and the R-UV-DHV possessed satisfactory biocompatibility. R–UVA crosslinking can be a new approach for improving the performance of the DHV to prepare a better scaffold for tissue-engineered valves.

Graphical abstract: A riboflavin–ultraviolet light A-crosslinked decellularized heart valve for improved biomechanical properties, stability, and biocompatibility

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Supplementary files

Article information


Submitted
05 Dec 2019
Accepted
02 Mar 2020
First published
03 Mar 2020

Biomater. Sci., 2020, Advance Article
Article type
Paper

A riboflavin–ultraviolet light A-crosslinked decellularized heart valve for improved biomechanical properties, stability, and biocompatibility

C. Liu, W. Qiao, H. Cao, J. Dai, F. Li, J. Shi and N. Dong, Biomater. Sci., 2020, Advance Article , DOI: 10.1039/C9BM01956A

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