Which is the bacterium that could contribute in realizing artificial blood vessels?
Bypass Operations are the classical interventions when occurs a blockage into the coronary vessels surrounding the heart. The first source of replacing the damaged vessels is a vain from the patient's leg, but if it's not fitting, the alternative consists in synthetic vessel. The problem with this kind of vessels is that, unlike the real ones, which possess a layer of cells that prevent clotting, the artifficial ones presesent an increased risk of blood clots.
It is known that around 6,000 of bypass operations are made in Sweden in every year, so that, facing with the problem of clotting from artificial vessels, specialists from Sahlgrenska Academy at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, have developped a thesis, where they have revealed the properties of the cellulose, produced by the bacterium Acetobacter xylinum. Compared with artificial vessel materials, cellulose produced by bacteria and used to build vessels, in contact with human blood, it is more resistant to pressure exercised to them and is better tolerated by human tissue.
There has recently been more awareness of the use of the bactrium Acetobacter xylinum in the formatiom of blood vessels. Currently scientists have been using synthetic materials to support the patient during bypass surgery. However, use of Acetobacter causes blood to coagulate at a slower rate and helps the system to maintain even blood pressure. Researchers at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden first started working on extracting the bacteria in 1986. Recent progress has shown positive impact of the bacteria during surgical application. The current methods scientists at the institute are using have enabled them to be able to multiply cells that are grown in the bacterial cellulose. Unlike previous methods they are now able to complete the process without changing the natural order of the material’s structure.
According to researchers from University of Gothenburg, Sweden ,they have found that the cellulose produced by bacteria could be used to develop artificial blood vessels in the future.
They say that bacterial cellulose carries a lower risk of blood clots than the synthetic materials currently used for bypass operations.
Produced by a bacterium known as Acetobacter xylinum, the cellulose is strong enough to cope with blood pressure and works well with the body's own tissue.