Injectable hydrogels are a potential therapy for mitigating adverse left ventricular (LV) remodeling after myocardial infarction (MI). Previous studies using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) have shown that hydrogel treatment improves systolic strain in the borderzone (BZ) region surrounding the infarct. However, the corresponding contractile properties of the BZ myocardium are still unknown. The goal of the current study was to quantify the in vivo contractile properties of the BZ myocardium post-MI in an ovine model treated with an injectable hydrogel. Contractile properties were determined 8 weeks following posterolateral MI by minimizing the difference between in vivo strains and volume calculated from MRI and finite element model predicted strains and volume. This was accomplished by using a combination of MRI, catheterization, finite element modeling, and numerical optimization. Results show contractility in the BZ of animals treated with hydrogel injection was significantly higher than untreated controls. End-systolic (ES) fiber stress was also greatly reduced in the BZ of treated animals. The passive stiffness of the treated infarct region was found to be greater than the untreated control. Additionally, the wall thickness in the infarct and BZ regions was found to be significantly higher in the treated animals. Treatment with hydrogel injection significantly improved BZ function and reduced LV remodeling, via altered MI properties. These changes are linked to a reduction in the ES fiber stress in the BZ myocardium surrounding the infarct. The current results imply that injectable hydrogels could be a viable therapy for maintaining LV function post-MI.
Biomechanics and Modeling in Mechanobiology – Springer Journals
Published: May 31, 2018
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