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Schaefermeier, P. K.; Szymanski, D.; Weiss, F.; Fu, P.; Lueth, T.; Schmitz, C.; Meiser, B. M.; Reichart, B.; Sodian, R. (2009): Design and Fabrication of Three-Dimensional Scaffolds for Tissue Engineering of Human Heart Valves. In: European Surgical Research, No. 1: pp. 49-53




We developed a new fabrication technique for 3-dimensional scaffolds for tissue engineering of human heart valve tissue. A human aortic homograft was scanned with an X-ray computer tomograph. The data derived from the X-ray computed tomogram were processed by a computer-aided design program to reconstruct a human heart valve 3-dimensionally. Based on this stereolithographic model, a silicone valve model resembling a human aortic valve was generated. By taking advantage of the thermoplastic properties of polyglycolic acid as scaffold material, we molded a 3-dimensional scaffold for tissue engineering of human heart valves. The valve scaffold showed a deviation of only +/- 3-4% in height, length and inner diameter compared with the homograft. The newly developed technique allows fabricating custom-made, patient-specific polymeric cardiovascular scaffolds for tissue engineering without requiring any suture materials. Copyright (c) 2008 S. Karger AG, Basel