Macroporous hydrogel membranes for a hybrid artificial pancreas. II. Biocompatibility.J Biomed Mater Res. 1983 Sep; 17(5):865-71.JB
A histological evaluation of the biocompatibility of a new porous hydrogel membrane made of 2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate (2-HEMA) was performed. Isolated membranes and diffusion chambers made of this material and filled with rabbit pancreas were implanted in diabetic rats for periods of up to 8 1/2 months. Histologic evaluation showed that this polymer elicits minimal tissue reaction within the first 7 weeks but some increase in granulation tissue and fibrosis thereafter. A component of this tissue reaction is neovascularization, and many blood vessels were noted immediately adjacent to the membrane's surface. Calcification of the membrane was also progressive but could be minimized by formulations resulting in the incorporation of acid groups throughout the hydrogel and on its surface. Diffusion chambers made of this new material show promise for use in a "hybrid" artificial pancreas for the treatment of diabetes.