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Scientists Craft Revolutionary Artificial Blood Vessels

posted: 04/30/15
by: Discovery.com Staff
Blood vessel illustration
Alex Belomlinsky/iStock

Austrian researchers have created an artificial blood vessel that the body gradually absorbs and replaces with its own tissue, leaving a "natural, fully functional vessel" in its place.

To create the vessel, researchers from Vienna University of Technology and Vienna Medical University devised a new polymer that is spun into thread and wound onto a spool. The resulting porous material allows blood to enter the vessel and encouraged cell growth.

"We did not find any aneurysms, thromboses or inflammation. Endogenous cells had colonized the vascular prostheses and turned the artificial constructs into natural body tissue," said researcher Helga Bergmeister.

Cardiovascular diseases are one of the most common causes of death in the industrialized world. Currently, those who suffer from blocked blood vessels must undergo a bypass surgery, in which blood vessels are grafted from other parts of the body or an artificial vessel is implanted.

Click here for more information from the Vienna University of Technology

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