A microCT-based approach for biomechanical characterization of biodegradable metallic intravascular stents

The goal of my research project is to develop a highly detailed, advanced characterization platform to assess different aspects of biodegradable metallic intravascular stents using high-resolution 3D microfocus X-ray computed tomography (microCT). This will improve the understanding of the functional behavior of biodegradable stents in order to improve their design for potential clinical use. Structural properties will be investigated. They are critical because they will influence the mechanical and in vivo behavior of the stents. The mechanical properties will be assessed through 3D local strain mapping using 4D microCT. Finally, the stents will be screened in vivo to analyze the corrosion and surface changes, before and after implantation in rat arteries, and to quantify tissue ingrowth. Contrast-enhanced microCT will be used to visualize the vascular tissue. Different metallic alloys will be compared throughout the project.