• Journal of neurosurgery · May 2024

    How the elastase-induced rabbit aneurysm heals following flow diverter treatment: a histopathological study.

    • Daying Dai, Cem Bilgin, Yonghong Ding, Sherief Ghozy, Oana Madalina Mereuta, David F Kallmes, and Ramanathan Kadirvel.
    • Departments of1Radiology and.
    • J. Neurosurg. 2024 May 17: 181-8.

    ObjectiveFibrin deposition is integral to thrombus formation and wound healing. The role of fibrin deposition and subsequent metabolism following flow diversion for aneurysm treatment remains poorly characterized. This study aimed to evaluate the role of fibrin in early thrombus organization after flow diverter treatment.MethodsThirty-five elastase-induced aneurysms were induced in New Zealand white rabbits and subjected to endoluminal flow diversion treatment. The device-bearing arteries were harvested at 1, 3, and 6 months postimplantation and processed for histopathological examination, including a modified picro-Mallory stain (Carstairs method) to visualize fibrin and platelets, immunohistochemical targeting of smooth muscle actin (SMA), and H&E staining for conventional morphological evaluation. Quantitative analysis of tissue components was carried out using the Orbit Image Analysis software. The samples were also assessed qualitatively to investigate the morphology and location of fibrin and other thrombus components within the intra-aneurysmal thrombi. Statistical analyses were conducted using R software version 4.3.1.ResultsFibrin constituted 27.9% of the thrombus tissue within the aneurysm sac for aneurysms harvested at 1 month, and this rate was significantly lower in the 3-month group (10.2%, p = 0.018). The proportion of blood cells within the sac was also notably higher in the 1-month group compared with other time points. The primary tissue filling the dome at 1 month (14/15, 93%) was an unorganized thrombus primarily composed of fibrin, platelets, and red blood cells. Conversely, aneurysms harvested at 1 month had the lowest collagen level (25.6%). However, collagen became the dominant tissue component within the aneurysm sac, accounting for 71.8% of tissue in the 3-month group (p = 0.007). There were no differences observed among the examined components between the 3-month and 6-month groups. On qualitative analysis, collagen-producing SMA-positive myofibroblasts were located near or in between fibrin molecules. Healed aneurysms exhibited myofibroblasts, collagen, and a well-organized fibrin network on the aneurysm neck. In contrast, unhealed aneurysms displayed a poorly organized fibrin network with scattered myofibroblasts at the neck area.ConclusionsThese findings indicate that fibrin plays a foundational role in the gradual occlusion of aneurysms after flow diverter treatment. Endovascular approaches that enhance fibrin accumulation could potentially improve aneurysm occlusion rates. Further research is needed to establish the precise role of fibrin in aneurysm occlusion.

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