The long-term objectives of this proposal are to develop compliant, thoracic artificial lungs (cTALs) that can be used as a bridge to transplant for patients with end-stage respiratory disease. As a bridge to lung transplantation, a cTAL would allow for more patients to be transplanted and improve outcomes. Blood flow to the cTAL comes from the pulmonary artery (PA), driven by the right ventricle. Blood flow returns to the distal PA or branch of the PA (PA-PA attachment) or the left atrium (PA-LA attachment). These devices are designed to supply a patient's full gas transfer requirements with significantly less coagulation and inflammation than with extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO). Our group's previous work has led to devices that met these goals in large animals. However, this work also indicates that the fluid mechanical impedance of these devices can cause a significant reduction in cardiac output (CO) when attached in the PA- PA configuration. If not for this reduction in CO, PA-PA attachment would be the ideal means of attaching cTALs, as it allows the natural lung to maintain its normal filtration and metabolic functions. The cause of the reduction in CO is due, in large part, to excessive cTAL impedance. The studies in this proposal are aimed at designing a cTAL with very low impedance such that it can be used in any attachment configuration with little to no reduction in CO. This design should also allow for increases in CO with exercise. Five studies are proposed to meet this goal. (1) The relationship between pulmonary system impedance and CO will be determined using an intact heart, large animal model. The developed relationship will be used to set impedance benchmarks for the design of an improved cTAL that causes little to no reduction in CO during PA-PA attachment. (2) Fluid structure interaction (FSI) modeling will be used to design a cTAL that meets the impedance benchmarks. Preliminary FSI and in-vitro data indicates that cTAL impedance can be reduced to at least 33-50% of current thoracic artificial lungs. This should result in large improvements in CO during cTAL use. (3) The selected design will be tested in-vitro under pulsatile flow to confirm hemodynamic performance. (4) The cTAL will be tested in-vivo to determine short term (<8 hrs) gas exchange and hemodynamic performance in the PA-PA and PA-LA configurations at normal and elevated CO. Lastly, (5) the cTAL will be tested in-vivo over 14 days to assess device performance and animal physiology. All animal studies will utilize a model of pulmonary hypertension during chronic lung disease. The resulting device will be ready for pre- clinical testing.

Public Health Relevance

The goal of this project is to design and test compliant artificial lungs. These devices will give chronic lung disease patients more time to find a donor lung and improve their health before and after transplantation.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI)
Research Project (R01)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZRG1-RES-B (03))
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Harabin, Andrea L
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University of Michigan Ann Arbor
Schools of Medicine
Ann Arbor
United States
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Scipione, Christopher N; Schewe, Rebecca E; Koch, Kelly L et al. (2013) Use of a low-resistance compliant thoracic artificial lung in the pulmonary artery to pulmonary artery configuration. J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg 145:1660-6
Schewe, Rebecca E; Khanafer, Khalil M; Orizondo, Ryan A et al. (2012) Thoracic artificial lung impedance studies using computational fluid dynamics and in vitro models. Ann Biomed Eng 40:628-36
Lin, Yu-Chun; Khanafer, Khalil M; Bartlett, Robert H et al. (2011) An Investigation of Pulsatile Flow Past Two Cylinders as a Model of Blood Flow in an Artificial Lung. Int J Heat Mass Transf 54:3191-3200