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The development of bioresorbable composite polymeric implants with high mechanical strength


Implants for the treatment of tissue defects should mimic the mechanical properties of the native tissue of interest and should be resorbable as well as biocompatible. In this work, we developed a scaffold from variants of poly(glycolic) acid which were braided and coated with an elastomer of poly(glycolide-co-caprolactone) and crosslinked. The coating of the scaffold with the elastomer led to higher mechanical strength in terms of compression, expansion and elasticity compared to braids without the elastomer coating. These composite scaffolds were found to have expansion properties similar to metallic stents, utilizing materials which are typically much weaker than metal. We optimized the mechanical properties of the implant by tuning the elastomer branching structure, crosslink density, and molecular weight. The scaffolds were shown to be highly resorbable following implantation in a porcine femoral artery. Biocompatibility was studied in vivo in an ovine model by implanting the scaffolds into femoral arteries. The scaffolds were able to support an expanded open lumen over 12 months in vivo and also fully resorbed by 18 months in the ovine model.

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Figure 1: Mechanical properties of the bioresorbable, self-expanding implant.
Figure 2: Creation of the strong, elastic, resorbable, self-expanding implant.
Figure 3: Mechanical properties and morphology of low- and high-elongation material.
Figure 4: Testing of 10:90/PGCL implant in vivo in swine ilio-femoral vessels.
Figure 5: Accelerated in vitro resorption time of base braids and elastomer-coated implants.
Figure 6: Histological results of elastomer-coated implants through full resorption.

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We thank J. Anderson, R. Virmani, R. Schwartz, and S. Hilbert for consultation and feedback. We acknowledge the efforts of A. Pappas, T. Ng, K. Ho, I. Gitlin, P. Zamiri, W. Naimark, A. Rago, D. Sundaresh, J. Marini, S. Morneau, M. Le, S. Varughese and K. Un in device fabrication, data collection, analytical evaluation, and manuscript review.

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Authors and Affiliations



U.S., D.C., L.C., Y.K., C.Y., G.Z., R.B., S.W. and M.P. conceived the experiments. C.Y. and J.M. performed the experiments. U.S., D.C., L.C., Y.K., C.Y., Q.P., G.Z. R.B. and S.W. undertook analysis of the data and results. U.S., D.C., L.C., Y.K., C.Y, Q.P., R.L. and G.M.W. wrote the manuscript.

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Correspondence to Maria Palasis.

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Upma Sharma PhD, Danny Concagh MS, Lee Core MSE, Yina Kuang PhD, Changcheng You PhD, Quynh Pham PhD, Greg Zugates PhD, Rany Busold BS, Jonathan Merlo BS, Stephanie Webber BS and Maria Palasis PhD were employees of 480 Biomedical at the time of this work. All authors have stock options in 480 Biomedical.

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Sharma, U., Concagh, D., Core, L. et al. The development of bioresorbable composite polymeric implants with high mechanical strength. Nature Mater 17, 96–103 (2018).

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