Endoluminal hydrogel films made of alginate and polyethylene glycol: Physical characteristics and drug-eluting properties

Maya Livnat, Rafael Beyar, Dror Seliktar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Drug-eluting stents signify a major achievement in reducing the incidence of coronary restenosis after percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty. However, where drug-eluting stents have been unsuccessful, endoluminal gel-paving strategies offer renewed optimism, mainly in a variety of vascular procedures requiring catheter-based sustained, localized delivery of therapeutic drugs, and biological factors. Despite promising results in animals, endoluminal paving has met with very limited clinical success because of the technical difficulties and stringent safety demands. The current study presents an alternative to gel paving using 40-μm-thick biodegradable polymeric films for deployment onto the artery wall during balloon angioplasty and stenting. The films are made from a durable yet compliant network of alginate and polyethylene glycol (PEG), and are securely held affixed to the vessel wall by the expanded stent struts. The alginate-based films are characterized by measuring their strength, elasticity, degree of swelling, degradability in water and saline, and drug release properties. The combination of alginate and PEG afforded the films sufficient strength and compliance for endoluminal deployment using an in vitro organ culture system. In characterizing the film degradability, it was discovered that the ionic concentration of the buffered saline was the main determinant in regulating the degradation kinetics and the release kinetics of the drug molecule Paclitaxel. These results suggest that the use of alginate-based, PEG-containing polymeric films for endoluminal coverage offers an alternative solution to conventional drug-eluting stents, with the added advantage of uniform endoluminal coverage of the treated segment and homogeneous endoluminal application of the active substance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)710-722
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Biomedical Materials Research - Part A
Issue number3
StatePublished - Dec 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Angioplasty
  • Biodegradable
  • Drug delivery
  • Endoluminal paving
  • Physicochemical properties

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Biomaterials


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