Complement Activation Triggered by Biomaterial Surfaces : Mechanisms and Regulation

Abstract: Today there are a vast number of medical devices in temporary or permanent contact with human tissues. Blood-biomaterial contact is known to trigger the complement system and results in generation of fluid phase anaphylatoxins C3a and C5a, and surface-bound C3b and iC3b. All these products together are able to attract and activate leukocytes and trigger release of inflammatory mediators leading to a systemic inflammation indirectly causing hemostatic problems and even organ failure. The aim of this study was to identify how complement is triggered on a biomaterial surface and to find ways to regulate this activation.The finding that complement activation on biomaterials can be divided into initiation and amplification will facilitate regulation of complement activation biomaterial surfaces. This concept is also compatible with the two techniques to regulate complement activation on a surface.

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