A prototype design of a portable, pulsatile, perfusion preservation device based on a novel application of fluidics technology was tested to evaluate its ability to oxygenate preservation solution and to examine the relationship between organ resistance, perfusion pressure, and perfusion flow characteristics. The effects of organ resistance on pulse rate, perfusion pressure, and perfusion flow were modeled. Interstitial PO2 in canine hearts stored at 4 degrees C for 12 hours in the fluidics device (n = 5) and in static hypothermic storage (n = 5) was also compared. Increasing outflow resistance did not have an effect on operating frequency of the fluidics actuator. Perfusion pressure rose as outflow resistance was increased, and the flow of preservation solution decreased proportionately. The PO2 of the preservation solution increased to 300 mm Hg in two hours and reached a plateau that exceeded 400 mm Hg within six hours. The aortic flow profile during pulsatile perfusion resembled a square wave function with a mean pulse duration of 0.30 +/- 0.05 seconds. Oxygen delivery by the fluidics perfusion device exceeded the oxygen requirements of the hypothermically preserved organs at all resistance levels. Initial interstitial PO2 in the hearts of both groups was greater than 150 mm Hg. In perfused hearts, PO2 declined 30% by the 12th hour, whereas complete depletion of oxygen was noted in the static storage group within six hours. The fluidics organ perfusion/transport apparatus weighs less than 18 kg, uses no electrical power, and can operate continuously for 10 to 12 hours expending 780 L of oxygen.
Bunegin L, Gelineau JF
Biomedical Instrumentation & Technology