Thrombosis test system: Investigation of polymeric valves in aortic position



Due to a lack of legal regulations and in‑vitro test systems the thrombogenicity of new developed aortic prostheses is first checked in vivo. Therefore an in‑vitro test system (THIA 3) has been already developed to evaluate the thrombogenicity of mechanical aortic prostheses at CVE. The test bench replicates the physiological conditions of the left ventricle and uses porcine blood as test fluid.

The THIA 3 takes the interaction between blood, blood contacting surface and flow into account. In contrast, most of the existing in‑vitro test systems neglect one of the three aspects so that the thrombogenicity is only estimated in vitro. Consequently, a more detailed analysis is first made in vivo. In a Proof-of-Principle our research group presented a study whereby it could already be shown, that the THIA 3 detects mechanical prosthetic valve thrombosis. However, other prostheses cannot be mounted in the existing test stand until now because different anchoring methods in the human heart are necessary. For example, mechanical prostheses are sewed, whereas stented polymeric valves are clamped into the natural valve.


This part of the project aims to further develop the existing THIA 3 so that the polymeric aortic valve, which is developed within the Poly Valve project, can also be investigated. By means of the test system, the number of thrombi, their location and size has already been detected in vitro. This allows to improve the prosthesis concerning its thrombogenicity before animal trials are performed.


In order to fix polymeric aortic valves inside the test chamber, the development of a valve holder and adjustments to the chamber will be necessary. Hereby it is important to maintain physiological parameters as well as to prevent thrombus formation caused by the valve holder.

Funding: This research project is funded by the INTERREG Program V-A Euregio Maas-Rheine of the European Union (Grant Number 2016/98602).