In vivo experimental study on laser welded ICG-loaded chitosan patches for vessel repair

Francesca Rossi, Paolo Matteini, Giuseppe Esposito, Alessio Albanese, Alfredo Puca, Giulio Maira, Giacomo Rossi, Roberto Pini

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Laser welding of microvessels provides several advantages over conventional suturing techniques: surgical times reduction, vascular healing process improvement, tissue damage reduction. We present the first application of biopolymeric patches in an in vivo laser assisted procedure for vessel repair. The study was performed in 20 New Zealand rabbits. After anesthesia, a 3-cm segment of the right common carotid artery was exposed and clamped proximally and distally. A linear lesion 3 mm in length was carried out. We used a diode laser emitting at 810 nm and equipped with a 300 μm diameter optical fiber. To close the cut, ICG-loaded chitosan films were prepared: chitosan is characterized by biodegradability, biocompatibility, antimicrobial, haemostatic and wound healing-promoting activity. ICG is an organic chromophore commonly used in the laser welding procedures to mediate the photothermal conversion at the basis of the welding effect. The membranes were used to wrap the whole length of the cut, and then they were welded in the correct position by delivering single laser spots to induce local patch/tissue adhesion. The result is an immediate closure of the wound, with no bleeding at clamps release. The animals were observed during follow-up and sacrificed after 2, 7, 30 and 90 days. All the repaired vessels were patent, no bleeding signs were documented. The carotid samples underwent histological examinations. The advantages of the proposed technique are: simplification of the surgical procedure and shortening of the operative time; good strength of the vessel repair; decreased foreign-body reaction, reduced inflammatory response and improved vascular healing process.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProgress in Biomedical Optics and Imaging - Proceedings of SPIE
Publication statusPublished - 2011
EventPhotonic Therapeutics and Diagnostics VII - San Francisco, CA, United States
Duration: Jan 22 2011Jan 24 2011


OtherPhotonic Therapeutics and Diagnostics VII
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Francisco, CA


  • chitosan patch
  • laser welding
  • vessel repair

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Biomaterials
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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