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Journal of Long-Term Effects of Medical Implants
SJR: 0.332 SNIP: 0.491 CiteScore™: 0.89

ISSN Print: 1050-6934
ISSN Online: 1940-4379

Journal of Long-Term Effects of Medical Implants

DOI: 10.1615/JLongTermEffMedImplants.v22.i2.20
pages 113-126

Can Marine Mammals Be a Reliable Source for the Manufacture of Prosthetic Heart Valves for Percutaneous Surgery?

Robert Guidoin
Department of Surgery, Faculty of Medicine, Laval University, Quebec, QC, Canada; Axe Medecine Regeneratrice, Centre de Recherche du CHU, Quebec, QC, Canada
Robert R. Reed
Department of Comparative Medicine, College of Veterinary of Tennessee Knoxville (TN)
Antoine Lagaude
Quebec Biomaterials Institute, St. Francois d'Assise Hospital CHUQ and Department of Surgery Laval University, Québec (QC) Canada
Taniela Marli Bes
Quebec Biomaterials Institute, St. Francois d'Assise Hospital CHUQ and Department of Surgery Laval University, Québec (QC) Canada
Bin Li
Department of Surgery, Faculty of Medicine, Laval University, Quebec, QC, Canada; Axe Medecine Regeneratrice, Centre de Recherche du CHU, Quebec, QC, Canada; Department of Vasular Surgery Changhai Hospital, Secondary Military Medical University, Shanghai, China
Julianne Klein
Departments of Pathology and Vascular Surgery and Research Centre St Boniface General Hospital, Winnipeg (MB), Canada
Robert Gauvin
Centre Québécois sur les Matériaux Fonctionnels (CQMF); Centre LOEX de l'Université Laval, Génie tissulaire et régénération, Department of Surgery, Faculty of Medicine, Laval University, Québec (QC) Canada
Randolph Guzman
Vascular Surgery, St. Boniface General Hospital and Department of Surgery, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Lucie Germain
Departments of Surgery and Radiology, Faculty of Medicine, Laval University, Axe Medecine Regeneratrice, Centre de Recherche, CHU, Quebec, (QC) Canada
Ze Zhang
Department of Surgery, Faculty of Medicine, Laval University, Quebec, QC, Canada; Axe Medecine Regeneratrice, Centre de Recherche du CHU, Quebec, QC, Canada

ABSTRACT

Marine mammals experience unique physiological conditions when diving. Myocardial function is sustained despite a 90% reduction of the blood flow in the coronaries. Therefore, their heart valves and pericardium could serve as a unique source of tissue for the manufacture of prosthetic heart valves. The pericardium of a stillborn pup sea lion was investigated to determine its morphology using gross observation, scanning electron microscopy (SEM), light microscopy, and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). Depending upon the site of sampling, the structure of the pericardium varied significantly. The atrial sample was well structured with wavy bundles of collagen fibers. The thickness in the atrial sample was regular with a smooth serous surface. The fibrous side of the pericardium of the auricular sample was irregular and incorporated microcapillaries. Both the sternoperitoneal ligament and the phrenoperitoneal ligament section were irregular and incorporated various amounts of adipocytes. Because of the increased amount of adipocytes, the fibrils of the collagen fibers were also observed to be occasionally agglutinated. Practically, the harvesting of pericardium would have to be restricted to the atrial surface. The presence of adipocytes in the pericardium wall makes the selection of this tissue a poor choice compared to alternative existing tissue sources.