One step to enable long-term use of extracorporeal membrane oxygenation devices or even the development of an artificial fully implantable lung is the endothelialization of oxygenator membranes in order to present a physiological and anti-thrombogenic surface to the blood flow. Since cell seeding decreases the gas transfer of oxygenation devices, a way to reincrease gas exchange performance by other means has to be found. In this study membrane assemblies suitable for endothelialization were developed, which profit from a secondary flow arrangement to increase gas transfer rates, the so-called Bellhouse effect. Therefore textiles that allow a homogeneous gas flow between the membranes and provide a structure that can be used as mold for hollow imprinting onto the membrane surfaces are combined with flat membranes to a sandwich structure. On top of that two approaches for hollow imprinting are generated and their results compared. The furrowed membrane assemblies are seeded with HUVECs and regularly inspected over 3 days cultivation. A surface characterization of the applied membranes is performed by contact angle measurement to identify reasons for inhomogeneous cell growth. In general first important results to develop a biohybrid lung assist device could be achieved in this study.
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Corresponding author: Stefan Jockenhoevel, Institute of Applied Medical Engineering – Department of Tissue Engineering and Textile Implants, Helmholtz Institute of RWTH Aachen University and Hospital, Pauwelsstr. 20, 52074 Aachen, Germany, Phone: +49 (0)241 80 89886, Fax: +49 (0)241 80 33 89886, E-mail: ; and Institut für Textiltechnik Aachen at RWTH Aachen University – Department of Tissue Engineering and Textile Implants, Otto-Blumenthal-Str. 1, 52074 Aachen, Germany