Dynamic sealing of lung air leaks by the transplantation of tissue engineered cell sheets
Current methods including the use of various biological and synthetic sealants are ineffective in the closure of intraoperative air leaks that often occur during cardiothoracic surgeries, resulting in a decreased quality of life for patients. We present the development of a novel lung air leak sealant using tissue engineered cell sheets. In contrast to previous materials such as fibrin glue, these bioengineered cell sheets immediately and permanently seal air leaks in a dynamic fashion that allows for the extensive tissue contraction and expansion involved in respiration, without any postoperative recurrences. Additionally, we demonstrate that mesothelial cells migrate to cover the transplanted cells sheets, thereby confirming excellent biocompatibility and integration with the host tissues. Finally, we present the use of skin fibroblasts as an effective and readily available autologous cell source that can be easily applied. This study shows for the first time, the development of an immediate and permanent lung air leak sealant, suitable for future clinical applications.
Journal: Biomaterials - Volume 28, Issue 29, October 2007, Pages 4294–4302