London -- A study into the in vivo performance of small-calibre nanofibrous polyurethane (PU) vascular grafts claims to have found that the grafts facilitate the growth of cells, prevent excessive hardening of the arteries, and help keeps arteries free from obstruction.
The research published on BMC Cardiovascular Disorders follows on from a previous study that found the grafts had favourable mechanical properties and biocompatibility. The aim of the study is to find a suitable material for synthetic vascular grafts, which can help prevent atherosclerosis, a disease in which fatty deposits build up in the arteries.
The authors claimed that current large-calibre grafts of greater than 6 mm are "associated with relatively low long-term potencies," meaning they do not keep the arterties free from obstruction for a prolonged period of time. Having developed small-calibre grafts previously, the team decided to carry out in vivo testing.
The team carried out testing on 48 adult male beagle dogs, which were randomly divided into two groups, one receiving PU grafts, the other polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) grafts. Each group was studied at four intervals over a 24-week period. The results showed a better performance from PU, the researchers claim, showing that PU vascular grafts "facilitate the endothelialisation process, prevent excessive neointimal hyperplasia, and improve patency rates."