Bassil Akra

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Heart valve disease (HVD) is a globally increasing problem and accounts for thousands of deaths yearly. Currently end-stage HVD can only be treated by total valve replacement, however with major drawbacks. To overcome the limitations of conventional substitutes, a new clinical approach based on cell colonization of artificially manufactured heart valves has(More)
The aim of the study was to compare the behavior of seeded cells on synthetic and natural aortic valve scaffolds during a low-flow conditioning period. Polyurethane (group A) and aortic homograft valves (group B) were consecutively seeded with human fibroblasts (FB), and endothelial cells (EC) using a rotating seeding device. Each seeding procedure was(More)
Umbilical cord tissue comprises an attractive new source for mesenchymal stem cells. Umbilical cord tissue-derived mesenchymal stem cells (UCMSC) exhibit self-renewal, multipotency and immunological naivity, and they can be obtained without medical intervention. The transfer of UCMSC to the ischemic region of the heart may have a favorable impact on tissue(More)
BACKGROUND Tissue engineering represents a promising new method for treating heart valve diseases. The aim of this study was evaluate the importance of conditioning procedures of tissue engineered polyurethane heart valve prostheses by the comparison of static and dynamic cultivation methods. METHODS Human vascular endothelial cells (ECs) and fibroblasts(More)
After myocardial infarction, the implantation of stem cell seeded scaffolds on the ischemic zone represents a promising strategy for restoration of heart function. However, mechanical integrity and functionality of tissue engineered constructs need to be determined prior to implantation. Therefore, in this study a novel pulsatile bioreactor mimicking the(More)
Microcomputed tomography (µ-CT) is a nondestructive, high-resolution, three-dimensional method of analyzing objects. The aim of this study was to evaluate the feasibility of using µ-CT as a noninvasive method of evaluation for tissue-engineering applications. The polyurethane aortic heart valve scaffold was produced using a spraying technique.(More)
The use of feeder based protocols for the creation, expansion and banking of hES cell lines are well established. The advances in technology for feeder free culture have predominantly relied on the cultivation of pluripotent cells in colony based systems, commonly used in conjunction with ill-defined matrices. We have developed a process to allow enzymatic(More)
Transcatheter aortic valve implantation (TAVI) is a fast-growing, exciting field of invasive therapy. During the last years many innovations significantly improved this technique. However, the prostheses are still associated with drawbacks. The aim of this study was to create cell-seeded biohybrid aortic valves (BAVs) as an ideal implant by combination of(More)
A cardiac patch is a construct devised in regenerative medicine to replace necrotic heart tissue after myocardial infarctions. The cardiac patch consists of a scaffold seeded with stem cells. To identify the best scaffold for cardiac patch construction we compared polyurethane, Collagen Cell Carriers, ePTFE, and ePTFE SSP1-RGD regarding their receptiveness(More)
OBJECTIVE Transcatheter aortic valve implantation gained clinical relevance with an impressive and peerless power; however, the procedure induces unsolved complications such as paravalvular leakage, occlusion of coronary ostia, and vascular complications. The safe removal of bulky calcified valves will improve the outcome, well known through the open(More)
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