Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Legacy Department



Vyavahare, Naren

Committee Member

LaBerge , Martine

Committee Member

Simionescu , Dan

Committee Member

Ramamurthi , Anand


Glutaraldehyde crosslinked bovine pericardium has been used for fabrication of bioprosthetic heart valves as well as cardiac patches for soft tissue repair. However, calcification and limited mechanical stability result in shortened life for the prostheses. Previous research has shown that glutaraldehyde crosslinking does not stabilize glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) and that GAGs are lost from porcine bioprosthetic heart valves[1]. Bovine pericardial tissue is composed of an amorphous network of collagen and elastin fibers, proteoglycans, and GAGs. The GAGs of bovine pericardium include dermatan sulfate, chondroitin sulfate, and hyaluronan [2].
It is hypothesized that Glut does not stabilize GAGs in pericardium and loss of GAGs may play a role in the degenerative failure of pericardial valves. Also stabilizing GAGs in the extracellular matrix of the pericardial valves may improve their function and extend their life. The objectives of this study were to 1) characterize the structure of bovine pericardium and determine the contribution of GAGs to the structure and mechanical behavior of the tissue; 2) determine the effectivness of glutaraldehyde fixation in the retention of GAGs; 3) determine the effectiveness of GAG stabilizing fixation of Neomycin enhanced carbodiimide crosslinking chemistry; 4) determine the stability of GAGs in vivo and correlation with calcification.