Immuno-driven and Mechano-mediated Neotissue Formation in Tissue Engineered Vascular Grafts

J. M. Szafron, R. Khosravi, J. Reinhardt, C. A. Best, M. R. Bersi, Tai Yi, C. K. Breuer, J. D. Humphrey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations


In vivo development of a neovessel from an implanted biodegradable polymeric scaffold depends on a delicate balance between polymer degradation and native matrix deposition. Studies in mice suggest that this balance is dictated by immuno-driven and mechanotransduction-mediated processes, with neotissue increasingly balancing the hemodynamically induced loads as the polymer degrades. Computational models of neovessel development can help delineate relative time-dependent contributions of the immunobiological and mechanobiological processes that determine graft success or failure. In this paper, we compare computational results informed by long-term studies of neovessel development in immuno-compromised and immuno-competent mice. Simulations suggest that an early exuberant inflammatory response can limit subsequent mechano-sensing by synthetic intramural cells and thereby attenuate the desired long-term mechano-mediated production of matrix. Simulations also highlight key inflammatory differences in the two mouse models, which allow grafts in the immuno-compromised mouse to better match the biomechanical properties of the native vessel. Finally, the predicted inflammatory time courses revealed critical periods of graft remodeling. We submit that computational modeling can help uncover mechanisms of observed neovessel development and improve the design of the scaffold or its clinical use.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1938-1950
Number of pages13
JournalAnnals of biomedical engineering
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 15 2018


  • Inflammation
  • Mechanosensing
  • Neovessel
  • Poly(glycolic acid)
  • Wall stress


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