Soft-sheath, stiff-core microfiber hydrogel for coating vascular implants

P. Boodagh*, R. Johnson, C. Maly, Ding Yonghui, W. Tan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Vascular implants remain clinically challenged due to often-occurring thrombosis and stenosis. Critical to addressing these complications is the design of implant material surfaces to inhibit the activities of platelets, smooth muscle cells (SMCs) and inflammatory cells. Recent mechanobiology studies accentuate the significance of material elasticity to cells and tissues. We thus developed and characterized an implant coating composed of hybrid, viscoelastic microfibers with coaxial core-sheath nanostructure. The coating over metallic stent material was formed by first depositing coaxially-electrospun fibers of poly(L-lactic acid) core and polyethylene glycol dimethacrylate sheath, and then polymerizing fibers with various UV times. Material characterizations were performed to evaluate the coating structure, mechanical property and biocompatibility. Results showed that coaxial microfibers exhibited arterial-like mechanics. The soft surface, high water content and swelling ratio of the coaxial fibers resemble hydrogels, while they are mechanically strong with an elastic modulus of 172–729 kPa. The coating strength and surface elasticity were tunable with the photopolymerization time. Further, the elastic fibers, as conformal coating on stent metal, strongly reduced SMC overgrowth and discouraged platelet adhesion and activation, compared to bare metals. Importantly, after 7-day subcutaneous implantation, coaxial fiber-coated implants showed more favorable in vivo responses with reduced tissue encapsulation, compared to bare stent metals or those coated with a two-layered fiber mixture composed of fibers from individual polymers. The excellent biocompatibility aroused from nanostructural interfaces of hybrid fibers offering hydrated, soft, nonfouling microenvironments. Such integrated fiber system may allow creation of advanced vascular implants that possess physico-mechanical properties of native arteries.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number110395
JournalColloids and Surfaces B: Biointerfaces
StatePublished - Nov 1 2019


  • 4 generation of stents
  • Coaxial electrospining
  • Coaxial nanofiber
  • PEG
  • PLLA
  • Platelet attachment
  • Stent coating
  • Surface properties in biological interaction
  • Thrombosis
  • Vascular graft

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Colloid and Surface Chemistry


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