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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Immunochemical identification of human endothelial cells on the lining of a ventricular assist device.

We are studying the biologic (pseudointimal) lining that forms in the HeartMate (Thermo Cardiosystems, Inc.; Woburn, Massachusetts, USA), a left ventricular assist device with a pusher-plate blood pump, housed in solid titanium with uniquely textured blood-contacting surfaces. Sintered titanium microspheres cover the rigid surface, and integrally textured polyurethane lines the flexing diaphragm. The texture of the blood-contacting surfaces is designed to encourage formation of a biologic pseudointimal lining, which greatly reduces the risk of thromboembolic complications. We performed immunochemical analyses to characterize precisely the pseudointimal lining. Samples were taken from 2 explanted pumps; 1 had supported a patient for 132 days and the other, 189 days. The samples were cultured to detect factor-VIII-related antigen (von Willebrand factor), acetyl low-density lipoprotein receptors, smooth-muscle-cell actin, and surface adhesion molecules specific for monocytes/macrophages. Macrophage cells were predominant in both pumps, but in the 2nd pump, cultures from the center of the diaphragm were positive for acetyl low-density lipoprotein receptor and von Willebrand factor, indicating the presence of endothelial cells. We believe that blood-borne endothelial cells or endothelial cell precursors were deposited on the blood-contacting surfaces, which is an important clinical finding with regard to lowering the risk of thromboembolic complications and reducing the need for systemic anticoagulation in long-term left ventricular assist device patients.[1]


  1. Immunochemical identification of human endothelial cells on the lining of a ventricular assist device. Frazier, O.H., Baldwin, R.T., Eskin, S.G., Duncan, J.M. Texas Heart Institute journal / from the Texas Heart Institute of St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital, Texas Children's Hospital. (1993) [Pubmed]
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