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Title: Development of an alternative ventricular catheter and an in vitro model of its obstruction
Author: Suresh, Supraja
ISNI:       0000 0004 5361 3927
Awarding Body: University of Strathclyde
Current Institution: University of Strathclyde
Date of Award: 2014
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Intracranial pressure and volume varies considerably between hydrocephalic patients, and with age, health and haemodynamic status; if left untreated intracranial pressure rises and the ventricular system expands to accommodate the excess cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), with significant morbidity and mortality. Although considerable improvements in design have been made since their introduction all CSF shunts in use today have a high incidence of failure with shunt obstruction being the most serious. Conventional proximal shunt catheters are made from poly (di-methyl) siloxane (PDMS), the walls of which are perforated with holes for the CSF to pass through. The limited range of catheters, in terms of material selection and flow distribution, is responsible in large part for their poor performance. The aim of the study is to design and fabricate an alternative design of proximal catheter with permeable walls, and to evaluate its performance in the presence of glial cells, which are responsible for blockage. Electrospun Poly-ether Urethane (EPU) samples were fabricated from solvent, by means of an electrospinning technique, to yield microfibrous polymer conduits. The hydrodynamic properties of EPU and conventional shunt were studied using a purpose-built shunt testing system. The viability and growth of cells on candidate catheter materials such as PDMS and polyurethane in the form of cast films, microfibrous mats and porous sponges were studied in presence of proteins present in CSF after 48h and 96h in culture. The number of viable cells was significantly less on EPU samples compared to the other substrates, which suggests that the fibrous form of the material from which the catheter is made has a bearing on the cell growth. A cell culture model of shunt obstruction was developed in which the cells were subjected to flow during culture in vitro, and the degree of obstruction quantified in terms of hydraulic permeability post static and perfusion culture. The results indicate that a catheter made of EPU would be able to maintain CSF flow even with the presence of cells for the time period chosen for this study. These findings have implications for the design and deployment of micro porous shunt catheter systems for the treatment of hydrocephalus.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral