This project aimed to design a growth factor environment to mitigate cellular contraction in TEHVs. Current heart valve replacements put patients at risk for biocompatibility issues, heart attack, stroke, and additional heart surgeries. Tissue Engineered Heart Valves (TEHVs) are a new option; however, they are not ready for clinical use as they experience leaflet retraction due to excessive cellular contraction. This project used 2D cell culture techniques to model and test combinatorial growth factor environments. Epidermal growth factor (EGF) and fibroblast growth factor (FGF) were found to be the most effective for reducing cellular contraction when used sequentially with transforming growth factor-beta (TGF-β), and are recommended for future development of TEHVs.
Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Major Qualifying Project
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