Engineered Biomaterials for Vascular Grafts


A biomaterial to create grafts for treating babies with congenital heart diseases.

Key Benefits

  • A biocompatible material that can be used to reroute blood within the body.
  • Experimental data in animals show the material is biocompatible with no clots, thrombus, or adverse immune reactions.
  • Potential to be used in other cardiovascular disease indications.

Market Summary

Hypoplastic left heart syndrome (HLHS) is a congenital disability where the heart's left chamber forms incorrectly, affecting normal blood flow. About 1,000 babies are born annually with the condition, which is fatal if untreated. Treatment generally involves multiple surgical procedures, implants, and/or a heart transplant to allow oxygen-rich blood to enter the body while sending oxygen-poor blood to the lungs. Survival rates for surgical repair continue to rise as surgery techniques have improved; however, 30% of babies succumb to the disease within a year.

Technical Summary

Researchers at Emory have developed new biomaterial to create grafts for treating babies with HLHS. The material comprises polycaprolactone and chitosan in a 10 to 1 ratio, drawn into 70-100 m nanofibers, and deposited onto decellularized bovine pericardium. The inventors have generated a laboratory-grade biomaterial prototype and tested it via in vitro experiments. Data show the biomaterial provides optimal stiffness, cellular attachment, and compatibility with blood cells (e.g., platelets). In addition, the biomaterial was used in vivo within sheep as carotid, pulmonary, and left arterial patches. No clots, thrombus, or material retractions were observed within the animals.

Developmental Stage

Animal data available.

Patent Information

App Type Country Serial No. Patent No. File Date Issued Date Patent Status
PCT PCT PCT/US2021/058063   11/4/2021   National Phase Entered
Tech ID: 21032
Published: 12/6/2022