Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Engineering

Degree Level



Biomedical Engineering


Hestekin, Jamie


End-stage renal disease (ESRD) is currently the ninth leading cause of death in the United States, and of the 661,00 Americans diagnosed with ESRD, approximately 468,800 were on hemodialysis in 2016. Hemodialysis refers to a technique where a machine combined with a membrane, often referred to as an artificial kidney, is used to clean blood by removing any waste such as urea, potassium, and other smaller waste products while preserving the concentrations and integrity of cells and proteins in the blood. It has been shown in artificial blood studies that cellulose nanomaterials, like TEMPO/Oxidized cellulose nanoparticles (TOCNs), can be integrated into membranes that subsequently display desirable membrane and membrane transport properties such as increased flux, urea clearance and fouling resistance. The focus of this study was on the application of three variants of these hollow fiber mixed-matrix membranes that were derived from two types (partially/fully oxidized) of TOCNs. Hemodialysis was performed using hematocrit adjusted bovine blood to analyze a number of transport properties of each membrane including protein rejection, blood cell rejection, ionic permeability, and urea clearance. The 50/50 mixed-matrix membrane showed promising results with its high ionic permeability to divalent cations and improved urea clearance and theoretical treatment time all while retaining a comparable concentration of erythrocytes, leukocytes, thrombocytes, and blood proteins. Form I and Form II both rejected blood cells and proteins similar to 50/50, however, they both had a reduced permeability to divalent cations while also showing little to no improvement in urea clearance or treatment time when compared to the control. For these reasons, the 50/50 membrane was distinguished as the most viable membrane to base future blood hemolysis and membrane characterization studies around due to its exceptional urea clearance, reduction of theoretical treatment time, and desirable ionic permeability properties.


Hemodialysis, Cellulose, Oxone, TEMPO, TOCNs, TOOCNs, Blood Purification, Dialysis