For novel therapeutic approaches of cardiovascular diseases, the preclinical investigation is of paramount and required appropriate technologies. We investigated the use of high-resolution ultrasound imaging system to evaluate the progression of vascular lesions in a rabbit model. Animals underwent vascular injury using two standard procedures. A bare-metal stent was placed within the left iliac artery, and a balloon injury was induced in the contralateral artery. The animals were kept on a regular diet for 8 weeks. A Vevo3100© VisualSonic high-resolution ultrasound imaging system and the associated software VevoVasc were used for the longitudinal evaluation of the injured arteries and the distal abdominal aorta. The lumen size increased rapidly after the intervention in both iliac arteries. In the balloon-injured artery, the augmentation was transient and significantly reversed, inducing an alteration of the blow flow. In contrast, in the stented segment, the lumen size was maintained enlarged overtime. We demonstrated a significant correlation for the wall thickness and the lumen size between ultrasonic and histological quantification. High-resolution ultrasound imaging in rabbit iliac arteries and the distal abdominal aorta is feasible, reliable and of relevance to investigate novel strategies for the inhibition of hyperplasia induced with standard injury models.
Part of the book: Animal Models in Medicine and Biology