Small Diameter Xenogeneic Extracellular Matrix Scaffolds for Vascular Applications

Manuela Lopera Higuita, Leigh G. Griffiths

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Currently, despite the success of percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI), coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) remains among the most commonly performed cardiac surgical procedures in the United States. Unfortunately, the use of autologous grafts in CABG presents a major clinical challenge as complications due to autologous vessel harvest and limited vessel availability pose a significant setback in the success rate of CABG surgeries. Acellular extracellular matrix (ECM) scaffolds derived from xenogeneic vascular tissues have the potential to overcome these challenges, as they offer unlimited availability and sufficient length to serve as "off-the-shelf" CABGs. Unfortunately, regardless of numerous efforts to produce a fully functional small diameter xenogeneic ECM scaffold, the combination of factors required to overcome all failure mechanisms in a single graft remains elusive. This article covers the major failure mechanisms of current xenogeneic small diameter vessel ECM scaffolds, and reviews the recent advances in the field to overcome these failure mechanisms and ultimately develop a small diameter ECM xenogeneic scaffold for CABG. Currently, the use of autologous vessel in coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) is common practice. However, the use of autologous tissue poses significant complications due to tissue harvest and limited availability. Developing an alternative vessel for use in CABG can potentially increase the success rate of CABG surgery by eliminating complications related to the use of autologous vessel. However, this development has been hindered by an array of failure mechanisms that currently have not been overcome. This article describes the currently identified failure mechanisms of small diameter vascular xenogeneic extracellular matrix scaffolds and reviews current research targeted to overcoming these failure mechanisms toward ensuring long-term graft patency.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)26-45
Number of pages20
JournalTissue Engineering - Part B: Reviews
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2020


  • extracellular matrix
  • small diameter vessel
  • vessel scaffold
  • xenogeneic scaffolds
  • xenogeneic small diameter vessel

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Biomaterials
  • Biochemistry
  • Biomedical Engineering


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