Biomaterial characterization of off-the-shelf decellularized porcine pericardial tissue for use in prosthetic valvular applications

Joshua A. Choe, Soumen Jana, Brandon J. Tefft, Ryan S. Hennessy, Jason Go, David Morse, Amir Lerman, Melissa D. Young

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Fixed pericardial tissue is commonly used for commercially available xenograft valve implants, and has proven durability, but lacks the capability to remodel and grow. Decellularized porcine pericardial tissue has the promise to outperform fixed tissue and remodel, but the decellularization process has been shown to damage the collagen structure and reduce mechanical integrity of the tissue. Therefore, a comparison of uniaxial tensile properties was performed on decellularized, decellularized-sterilized, fixed, and native porcine pericardial tissue versus native valve leaflet cusps. The results of non-parametric analysis showed statistically significant differences (p <.05) between the stiffness of decellularized versus native pericardium and native cusps as well as fixed tissue, respectively; however, decellularized tissue showed large increases in elastic properties. Porosity testing of the tissues showed no statistical difference between decellularized and decell-sterilized tissue compared with native cusps (p >.05). Scanning electron microscopy confirmed that valvular endothelial and interstitial cells colonized the decellularized pericardial surface when seeded and grown for 30 days in static culture. Collagen assays and transmission electron microscopy analysis showed limited reductions in collagen with processing; yet glycosaminoglycan assays showed great reductions in the processed pericardium relative to native cusps. Decellularized pericardium had comparatively low mechanical properties among the groups studied; yet the stiffness was comparatively similar to the native cusps and demonstrated a lack of cytotoxicity. Suture retention, accelerated wear, and hydrodynamic testing of prototype decellularized and decell-sterilized valves showed positive functionality. Sterilized tissue could mimic valvular mechanical environment in vitro, therefore making it a viable potential candidate for off-the-shelf tissue-engineered valvular applications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1608-1620
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2018


  • biomechanics
  • decellularization
  • heart valves
  • pericardial tissue
  • sterilization
  • tissue engineering

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Engineering


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