Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Warnock, James

Committee Member

Liao, Jun

Committee Member

Cooper, Robert

Committee Member

Elder, Steven

Date of Degree


Document Type

Graduate Thesis - Open Access


Biomedical Engineering

Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.)


James Worth Bagley College of Engineering


Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering


Children born with congenital heart valve defects require open-heart surgery to implant an artificial replacement valve. These valves are unable to grow with the developing child and need replacing every 5 years. Tissue engineered heart valves, capable of growing with the patient, would alleviate the need for repeat surgery. I hypothesize chitosan and collagen possess advantageous qualities as scaffolding for a tissue engineered heart valve. This study evaluated chitosan and collagen hydrogels as potential scaffold materials. Chitosan scaffolds had suitable pore size/distribution and scaffold strength; however, they were unable to sustain cell attachment or viability. Collagen gels were assessed for compaction, mechanical properties and expression of matrix metalloproteases in the presence or absence of biochemical and mechanical stimuli. Pressure increased the remodeling potential. This was augmented further in the presence of TGF-β. In conclusion, both materials have potential as scaffolding substrate in a tissue engineered heart valve.