Preclinical testing of a novel thin film nitinol flow-diversion stent in a rabbit elastase aneurysm model

Y. Ding, D. Dai, D. F. Kallmes, D. Schroeder, C. P. Kealey, V. Gupta, A. D. Johnson, R. Kadirvel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Background and Purpose: Thin film nitinol can be processed to produce a thin microporous sheet with a low percentage of metal coverage (<20%) and high pore attenuation (∼70 pores/mm2) for flow diversion. We present in vivo results from the treatment of experimental rabbit aneurysms by using a thin film nitinol-based flow-diversion device. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Nineteen aneurysms in the rabbit elastase aneurysm model were treated with a single thin film nitinol flow diverter. Devices were also placed over 17 lumbar arteries to model perianeurysmal branch arteries of the intracranial circulation. Angiography was performed at 2 weeks (n = 7), 1 month (n = 8), and 3 months (n = 4) immediately before sacrifice. Aneurysm occlusion was graded on a 3-point scale (grade I, complete occlusion; grade II, near-complete occlusion; grade III, incomplete occlusion). Toluidine blue staining was used for histologic evaluation. En face CD31 immunofluorescent staining was performed to quantify neck endothelialization. RESULTS: Markedly reduced intra-aneurysmal flow was observed on angiography immediately after device placement in all aneurysms. Grade I or II occlusion was noted in 4 (57%) aneurysms at 2-week, in 6 (75%) aneurysms at 4-week, and in 3 (75%) aneurysms at 12-week follow-up. All 17 lumbar arteries were patent. CD31 staining showed that 75% ± 16% of the aneurysm neck region was endothelialized. Histopathology demonstrated incorporation of the thin film nitinol flow diverter into the vessel wall and no evidence of excessive neointimal hyperplasia. CONCLUSIONS: In this rabbit model, the thin film nitinol flow diverter achieved high rates of aneurysm occlusion and promoted tissue in-growth and aneurysm neck healing, even early after implantation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)497-501
Number of pages5
JournalAmerican Journal of Neuroradiology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Clinical Neurology


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