Endothelialization and flow conditioning of fibrin-based media-equivalents

Brett C. Isenberg, Chrysanthi Williams, Robert T. Tranquillo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

78 Scopus citations


It is generally accepted that endothelialization and subsequent development of a functional endothelium are of paramount importance to the success of any bioartificial artery. In this study, we aimed to assess the ability of smooth muscle cell-remodeled, fibrin-based media-equivalents (MEs) to be endothelialized, examine the morphological changes of endothelial cells (ECs) associated with exposure to physiologically-relevant shear stress in a custom-built bioreactor, and determine if adherent ECs are capable of withstanding average physiological shear stresses. It was found that MEs could be readily endothelialized with surface coverages of 98.8 ± 0.9% after two days, and the ECs expressed von Willebrand factor. Furthermore, EC retention remained high (steady: 96.5 ± 4.4%, pulsatile: 94.3 ± 4.3%) under exposure to physiologically relevant shear stresses for 48 h. The results indicate that these MEs are conducive to generating an EC monolayer, with the ECs possessing adhesion strength sufficient to withstand physiological shear stress and maintain a normal phenotype.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)971-985
Number of pages15
JournalAnnals of Biomedical Engineering
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2006

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by NHLBI HL60495 (R.T.T.). Deborah Cocking-Johnson and Dr. Ginés Escolar performed the Baumgartner assay and the sample analysis, respectively. The technical assistance of Sandra Johnson, Naomi Ferguson, and Diane Tobolt is also gratefully acknowledged.


  • Endothelial cell
  • Fibrin gel
  • Fluid flow
  • Shear stress
  • Smooth muscle cell
  • Tissue engineering
  • Vascular graft


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