Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Engineering

Degree Level



Biomedical Engineering


Jensen, Morten


Venous valve failure allows for the retrograde, or backward, flow of blood into the lower extremities, which leads to Chronic Venous Insufficiency (CVI). CVI infringes upon quality of life through ulceration and can result in death due to Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT), or blood clots, causing pulmonary embolism. A successful treatment of CVI restores valve function and prevents retrograde blood flow; however, current bioprosthetic venous valves exhibit low patency and high calcification. To improve upon bioprosthetic venous valves and CVI treatment, the University of Arkansas’s Cardiovascular Biomechanics Lab conducts studies with the purpose of comparing the properties and performance of venous valves fixed with various techniques to those of native venous valves.

The standard fixation process for xenografts in cardiovascular applications is glutaraldehyde in a static environment. Our lab has previously compared venous valves statically fixed with glutaraldehyde to native venous valves.

The first goal was to investigate if tissue fixation had a different effect on venous valves than cardiac valves. This was accomplished through shrink temperature, pronase digestion and collagenase digestion studies. These studies will compare the tissue stability and collagen cross-linking for venous and cardiac tissue fixed with glutaraldehyde.

The next goal was to create a dynamic fixation flow loop at venous physiological conditions to dynamically fix venous valves with glutaraldehyde. In future work, dynamic fixation effects will be compared to the previously obtained static fixation results for the determination of which environment is better at retaining valve function.


Venous valve, Bioprosthetic valve, Glutaraldehyde fixation, Alternative fixation, Dynamic Fixation, Xenograft fixation