Biomedical and General Engineering Department
BS in Biomedical Engineering
Peripheral arterial occlusive disease (PAOD) occurs when there is a narrowing or blockage – usually a buildup of plaque - within the arteries that reduces blood flow to tissues which can chronic ischemia. As with most diseases, early detection and proactive treatment are important to maximize prognosis. Exercise effectively treats PAOD, but due to ischemic pain in the limbs, or intermittent claudication (IC), exercise can become painful and difficult. Due to the buildup of plaque, occlusions create an ischemic environment that changes the pressure distribution in collateral networks and increases the shear stress in transverse collaterals. Those two responses signal the beginning of arteriogenesis- the enlargement of natural bypass collaterals, which can alleviate IC and allow patients to exercise more comfortably. Arteriogenesis is controlled by macrophages and growth factors to induce proliferation in endothelium and smooth muscles cells (SMCs); enlarging arteries allow more blood to flow and oxygen to be transported. In this study, fibroblast-containing collagen constructs were transplanted under the gracilis muscle of mice with a ligated femoral artery to confirm their beneficial contribution to arteriogenesis. Collagen constructs were also found to improve functionality of muscle force production 7-days post femoral artery ligation. Though force-intensity found no statistical significant between collagen constructs and fibroblast-containing collagen constructs, they were both found to be an improvement from the baseline disease state. Force-frequency data found fibroblast-containing collagen constructs to be an improvement from the baseline disease state while being similar to the control, non-disease state. The PowerLab data acquisition unit (DAQ) and force transducer set-up is a novel method to quantify the efficacy of myogenic cells to functionally treat ischemic diseases and optimistic results of this study along with research based data acquisition improvements suggest more robust and meaningful results in a multi-operator class setting.