Tissue-engineered vascular grafts have been investigated as a substitute for prosthetic vascular grafts. The current scaffolds have several limitations due to weak mechanical properties in withstanding the pressure of blood vessel. A gel-spinning molding device including three-separate drivers that make a cylindrical shaft turn on its axis, orbit, and concurrently move up and down was developed for preparing seamless fibrous tubular scaffolds for vascular grafts. A seamless double-layered tubular scaffold, which was composed of an outer fibrous network and inner porous layer, was fabricated by using the device for the spinning of poly(L-lactide-co-caprolactone) (PLCL, 50:50) solution as a gel state on a rotating cylindrical shaft that had been dip-coated with the mixture of PLCL solution and NaCl particles. A scaffold that had an inner layer fabricated with 30% salts, below 20 μm in salt size, and more than 100 μm in thickness, was found to be optimal from a blood leakage test. The burst pressures of the scaffolds were more than 900 mmHg. The scaffolds exhibited 550-670% elongation-at-break. The measured circumferential and longitudinal tensile strengths of the scaffolds were 3.62 ± 0.68 and 2.64 ± 0.41 MPa, respectively. The suture retention strength of the scaffold was measured to be 7.68 ± 0.75 N. These mechanically strong and elastic properties of the newly developed scaffolds provide an important basis for blood vessel tissue engineering.
- Double-layered scaffold
- Gel-spinning molding technique
- Vascular tissue engineering
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biomedical Engineering