Computer controlled device to independently control flow waveform parameters during organ culture and biomechanical testing of mouse carotid arteries.
Gazes, Seth Brian
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Understanding the mechanisms of cardiovascular disease progression is essential in developing novel therapies to combat this disease that contributes to 1 in 3 deaths in the United States every year. Endothelial dysfunction and its effects on vessel growth and remodeling are key factors in the progression and localization of atherosclerosis. Much of our understanding in this area has come from in-vivo and in-vitro experiments however perfused organ culture systems provide an alternative approach. Organ culture systems can provide a more controlled mechanical and biochemical environment compared to in-vivo models. This study focused on furthering development of this organ culture model by introducing a novel device to produce flow waveforms at the high frequencies and low mean flows seen in the mouse model. The device is capable of monitoring pressure, flow, diameter, and nitric oxide release. Each individual mechanism in the system was integrated via a computer using a custom Labview interface. The performance of the device was characterized by developing physiologic, physiologic-oscillatory, low, low-oscillatory waveforms and sinusoidal waveforms at frequencies ranging from 1-10 Hz. Overall this system provides a robust model to test the effects of flow on various biological markers both in real-time and after culture.