Biomechanical changes from long-term freezer storage and cellular reduction of tracheal scaffoldings

Matthew C. Jones, Frederick A. Rueggeberg, Aaron J. Cunningham, Hunter A. Faircloth, Tanima Jana, Donald Mettenburg, Jennifer L. Waller, Gregory N. Postma, Paul M. Weinberger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Objectives/Hypothesis: To determine structural biomechanical changes in tracheal scaffolds resulting from cellular reduction and storage at 280°C.

Study Design: Laboratory-based study.

Methods: Forty-four rabbit tracheal segments were separated into four treatment groups: untreated (group A, control), cellular-reduced (group B), storage at 280°C followed by cellular reduction (group C), and cellular-reduced followed by storage at 280°C (group D). Tracheal segments were subjected to uniaxial tension (n521) or compression (n523) using a universal testing machine to determine sutured tensile yield load and radial compressive strengths at 50% lumen occlusion. Mean differences among groups for tension and compression were compared by analysis of variance with post-hoc Tukey-Kramer test.

Results: The untreated trachea (group A) demonstrated mean yield strength of 5.93 (± 1.65) N and compressive strength of 2.10 (± 0.51) N. Following treatment/storage, the tensile yield strength was not impaired (group B56.79 [± 1.58] N, C56.21 [± 1.40] N, D56.26 [± 1.18]; P>0.10 each). Following cellular reduction, there was a significant reduction in compressive strength (group B50.44 N [± 0.13], P<0.0001), but no further reduction due to storage (group C50.39 N [± 0.10]; P50.97 compared to group B).

Conclusion: The data suggest cellular reduction leads to loss of compressive strength. Freezing at -80°C (either before, or subsequent to cellular reduction) may be a viable storage method for tracheal grafts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)E16-E22
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015


  • Allograft
  • Mechanical phenomena
  • Tensile strength
  • Tissue engineering
  • Tissue transplantation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology


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