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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2009, 10(10), 4375-4417; doi:10.3390/ijms10104375
Review

ECM-Based Materials in Cardiovascular Applications: Inherent Healing Potential and Augmentation of Native Regenerative Processes

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Centre for Applied Biomedical Engineering Research (CABER), Department of Mechanical & Aeronautical Engineering, and Materials and Surface Science Institute (MSSI), University of Limerick, Limerick, Ireland
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 17 July 2009 / Revised: 7 September 2009 / Accepted: 30 September 2009 / Published: 12 October 2009
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biocompatibility of Materials)
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Abstract

The in vivo healing process of vascular grafts involves the interaction of many contributing factors. The ability of vascular grafts to provide an environment which allows successful accomplishment of this process is extremely difficult. Poor endothelisation, inflammation, infection, occlusion, thrombosis, hyperplasia and pseudoaneurysms are common issues with synthetic grafts in vivo. Advanced materials composed of decellularised extracellular matrices (ECM) have been shown to promote the healing process via modulation of the host immune response, resistance to bacterial infections, allowing re-innervation and reestablishing homeostasis in the healing region. The physiological balance within the newly developed vascular tissue is maintained via the recreation of correct biorheology and mechanotransduction factors including host immune response, infection control, homing and the attraction of progenitor cells and infiltration by host tissue. Here, we review the progress in this tissue engineering approach, the enhancement potential of ECM materials and future prospects to reach the clinical environment.
Keywords: vascular graft; extracellular matrix; healing; native regenerative processes vascular graft; extracellular matrix; healing; native regenerative processes
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Piterina, A.V.; Cloonan, A.J.; Meaney, C.L.; Davis, L.M.; Callanan, A.; Walsh, M.T.; McGloughlin, T.M. ECM-Based Materials in Cardiovascular Applications: Inherent Healing Potential and Augmentation of Native Regenerative Processes. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2009, 10, 4375-4417.

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