Introduction We developed a rabbit iliac model to investigate the in vivo interaction of coronary stents with the vessel wall and circulating blood. A recovery model was used to assess the biocompatibility of RGD coated stents.
Methods The stent thrombosis model consisted of male NZW rabbits medicated with Aspirin and Clopidogrel 1mg/kg, following platelet function studies to test appropriate antiplatelet response.
Platelets were fluorescently labelled ex-vivo and re-injected pre-operatively. Superficial femoral (SFA) and iliac arteries were exposed bilaterally. An angioplasty balloon catheter introduced via a femoral arteriotomy was used to injure the proximal common iliac artery. A stent was deployed at the site of injury and the SFA ligated to reduce flow. Contralateral procedures allowed testing of study and control stents.
Iliac blood flow was measured bilaterally for 2 h post stenting and following euthanasia, stented vessels removed and fixed. Platelet deposition on both stents was compared using immunofluorescence and explanted vessels were imaged with OCT.
The recovery model involved limited dissection. After 28 days, the stented vessels were perfusion fixed, explanted and sent to CVPath for processing.
Results We performed 15 acute, including 6 BVS vs durable polymer stents and 13 recovery procedures, including 10 RGD coated vs BMS. Differences in flow, platelet deposition and OCT will be presented.
Conclusions The rabbit iliac model has proven to be a reproducible method to assess the acute thrombogenicity and chronic biocompatibility of coronary stents and scaffolds.
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