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Cardiac Tissue Engineering - Term Paper Example

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The author analyzes the ‘Mending Broken Hearts with Tissue Engineering’ article which describes a novel scaffold for seeding stem cells and heart cells. The article presents results in the new field of cardiac tissue engineering that seeks to revolutionize the treatment of end-stage heart failure. …
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Cardiac Tissue Engineering
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Download file to see previous pages The accordion-like, honeycomb, polymer scaffold matches the structural and mechanical characteristics of heart tissues by being directionally dependent. This means that the tissues that were cultivated on the scaffold gave similar electrophysiological responses to those of the native heart. The nature of the scaffold also intrinsically guides the alignment of cultured cells even without electrical stimulation (Engelmayr et al., 2008). Compared to previous scaffolds, this one has mechanical properties that are very similar to those of the native heart. 
‘application of principles and methods of engineering and life sciences toward fundamental understanding of structure-function relationship in normal and pathological mammalian tissues and the development of biological substitutes to restore, maintain or improve functions’
(as quoted in Eschenhagen & Zimmermann, 2005). Tissue engineering employs biological, engineering, and material sciences to replace and improve the function of biological tissues. There are three general strategies used (Langer & Vacanti, 1993):
3. implantation of cells on matrices to the body either in closed systems (where the implants are isolated from other tissues to prevent immune system attack), and open systems where the cells are incorporated into the system. Matrices (or scaffolds) may be created from natural materials or from synthetic polymers.
The current techniques involve the production of tissues from donor cells that have been seeded on three-dimensional polymeric scaffolds, then inducing growth of new healthy tissues by culture and implantation of these scaffolds to the chosen organ.  ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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