Avoidance of ice formation during cooling can be achieved by vitrification, which is defined as solidification in an amorphous glassy state that obviates ice nucleation and growth. We show that a vitrification approach to storing vascular tissue results in markedly improved tissue function compared with a standard method involving freezing. The maximum contractions achieved in vitrified vessels were >80% of fresh matched controls with similar drug sensitivities, whereas frozen vessels exhibited maximal contractions below 30% of controls and concomitant decreases in drug sensitivity. In vivo studies of vitrified vessel segments in an autologous transplant model showed no adverse effects of vitreous cryopreservation compared with fresh tissue grafts.
Subscribe to Journal
Get full journal access for 1 year
only $21.58 per issue
All prices are NET prices.
VAT will be added later in the checkout.
Rent or Buy article
Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.
All prices are NET prices.
Taylor, M.J. in Transplantation immunology: clinical and experimental (ed. Calne, R.Y.) 360–390 (Oxford University Press, New York, NY; 1984).
Pegg, D.E., Jacobsen, I.A., Armitage, W.J. & Taylor, M.J. in Organ preservation II (eds Pegg, D.E. & Jacobsen, I.A.) 132–146 (Churchill Livingstone, Edinburgh, UK; 1979).
Pegg, D.E. in Progress in transplantation (eds Morris, P.J. & Tilney, N.L.) 69–105 (Churchill Livingston, Edinburgh, UK; 1985).
Pegg, D.E. in The biophysics of organ preservation (eds Pegg, D.E. & Karow, A.M.) 117–140 (Plenum, New York, NY; 1987).
Hunt, C.J., Taylor, M.J. & Pegg, D.E. Freeze-substitution and isothermal freeze fixation studies to elucidate the pattern of ice formation on smooth muscle at 252 K (−21 C). J. Microsc. 125, 177–186 (1982).
Taylor, M.J. & Pegg, D.E. The effect of ice formation on the function of smooth muscle tissue following storage at −21 C and −60 C. Cryobiology 20, 36–40 (1982).
Jacobsen, I.A. et al. Effect of cooling rate and warming rate on glycerolized rabbit kidneys. Cryobiology 21, 637–653 (1984).
Fahy, G.M. in Biophysics of organ cryopreservation (eds Pegg, D.E. & Karow, A.M.) 265–297 (Plenum, New York, NY; 1987).
Fahy, G.M. in Low temperature biotechnology: emerging applications and engineering contributions (eds McGrath, J.J. & Diller, K.R.) 113–146 (The American Society of Mechanical Engineers, New York, NY; 1988).
Fahy, G.M., MacFarlane, D.R., Angell, C.A. & Meryman, H.T. Vitrification as an approach to cryopreservation. Cryobiology 21, 407–426 (1984).
Fahy, G.M., Levy, D. & Ali, S.E. Some emerging principles underlying the physical properties, biological actions, and utility of vitrification solutions. Cryobiology 24, 196–213 (1987).
Farrant, J. Mechanism of cell damage during freezing and thawing and its prevention. Nature 205, 1284–1287 (1965).
Elford, B.C. Diffusion and distribution of dimethyl sulphoxide in the isolated guinea-pig Taenia coli. J. Physiol. 209, 187–208 (1970).
Elford, B.C. & Walter, C.A. Preservation of structure and function of smooth muscle cooled to −79°C in unfrozen aqueous media. Nat. New Biol. 236, 58–60 (1972).
Elford, B.C. & Walter, C.A. Effects of electrolyte composition and pH on the structure and function of smooth muscle cooled to −79°C in unfrozen media. Cryobiology, 9, 82–100 (1972).
Kent, K.C., Whittemore, A.D. & Mannick, J.A. Short term and midterm results of an all-autogenous tissue policy for infrainguinal reconstruction. J. Vasc. Surg. 9, 107–114 (1989).
McNally, R.T., Walsh, K. & Richardson, W. Early clinical evaluation of cryopreserved allograft vein. Cryobiology 29, 702. (1992).
Walker, P.J., Mitchell, R.S., McFadden, P.M., James, D.R. & Mehigan, J.T. Early experience with cryopreserved saphenous vein allografts as a conduit for complex limb-salvage procedures. J. Vasc. Surg. 18, 561–569 (1993).
Bilfinger, T.V., Hartman, A.R., Liu, Y., Magazine, H.I. & Stefano, G.B. Cryopreserved veins in myocardial revascularization: possible mechanism for their increased failure. Ann. Thorac. Surg. 63, 1063–1069 (1997).
Brockbank, K.G.M. Effects of cryopreservation upon vein function in vivo. Cryobiology 31, 71–81 (1994).
Song, Y.C., Hunt, C.J. & Pegg, D.E. Cryopreservation of the common carotid artery of the rabbit. Cryobiology 31, 317–329 (1994).
Song, Y.C., Pegg, D.E. & Hunt, C.J. Cryopreservation of the common carotid artery of the rabbit: optimization of dimethyl sulfoxide concentration and cooling rate. Cryobiology 32, 405–421 (1995).
McNally, R.T., McCaa, C., Brockbank, K.G.M., Heacox, A.E. & Bank, H.L. Method for cryopreserving blood vessels. CryoLife, Inc. and Medical University of South Carolina. US Patent 5,145,769 (1992).
Finney, D.J. in Statistical methods in biological assay (ed. Finney, D.J.) 349–369 (Charles Griffin, London, 1978).
Faggioli, G.I. et al. Long term cryopreservation of autologous veins in rabbits. Cardiovasc. Surg. 2, 259–265 (1994).
Elmore, J.R., Gloviczki, P., Brockbank, K.G.M. & Miller, V.M. Cryopreservation affects endothelial and smooth muscle function of canine autogenous saphenous vein grafts. J. Vasc. Surg. 13, 584–592 (1991).
Rall, W.F. & Fahy, G. Ice-free cryopreservation of mouse embryos at −196°C by vitrification. Nature 313, 573–575 (1985).
Mehl, P. Nucleation and crystal growth in a vitrification solution tested for organ cryopreservation by vitrification. Cryobiology 30, 509–518 (1993).
Bateson, E.A.J., Busza, A.L., Pegg, D.E. & Taylor, M.J. Permeation of common carotid arteries with dimethyl sulfoxide. Cryobiology 31, 393–397 (1994).
Davies, M.G. et al. Controlling transplant vasculopathy in cryopreserved vein grafts with polyethylene glycol and glutathione during transport. Eur. J. Vasc. Endovasc. Surg. 17, 493–500 (1999)
Motulsky, H. Intuitive biostatistics (Oxford University Press, New York, NY; 1995).
Excellent technical assistance was provided by Janet Boggs, Beth Greene, and Kim McCourry. We thank Otto Hagen for advice relating to the physiological aspects of this study. This work was supported in part by a cooperative agreement (#97-07-0039) with the US Department of Commerce, National Institute of Standards Technology–Advanced Technology Program.
About this article
Cite this article
Song, Y., Khirabadi, B., Lightfoot, F. et al. Vitreous cryopreservation maintains the function of vascular grafts. Nat Biotechnol 18, 296–299 (2000). https://doi.org/10.1038/73737
Scaling Effects on the Residual Thermomechanical Stress During Ice-Free Cooling to Storage Temperature
Journal of Applied Mechanics (2020)
Chemical Physics (2020)
The “cold revolution”. Present and future applications of cold-active enzymes and ice-binding proteins
New Biotechnology (2020)
Annals of Vascular Surgery (2020)
Pre-grafting histological studies of skin grafts cryopreserved in α helix antarctic yeast oriented antifreeze peptide (Afp1m)