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Materials Engineering & Material-Tissue Interactions

Division C - Department of Engineering

We have patented a method for de novo production of densified collagen tubes. Our method transforms low concentration collagen hydrogel, with randomly orientated fibrils, into an aligned high concentration tubular conduit. The tubes are customisable in terms of tube diameter and wall thickness, yielding tubes for both small animal and human-sized tissues. Cells or organoids can be seeded and onto the surface and also into the walls of tube. To enable future regulatory review and human clinical trials, the grafts require validation in small animal (rats; completed) and large animal (pigs) models as a proof-of-concept. Ex vivo perfusion has been undertaken to evaluate graft performance prior to in vivo porcine testing.


The project is carried out in collaboration with Prof Kourosh Saeb-Parsy (Transplant Surgeon, Department of Surgery), Prof Sanjay Sinha (Consultant Cardiologist, Department of Medicine/Wellcome-MRC Cambridge Stem Cell Institute), Dr Martin Goddard (Consultant Histopathologist, Royal Papworth Hospital), Prof. Gavin Pettigrew (Transplant Surgeon, Department of Surgery) and Dr Marie-Aude Genain (Clinical Radiologist, Queen's Veterinary School Hospital).