Evolution of the degradation mechanism of pure zinc stent in the one-year study of rabbit abdominal aorta model

Hongtao Yang, Cong Wang, Chaoqiang Liu, Houwen Chen, Yifan Wu, Jintao Han, Zichang Jia, Wenjiao Lin, Deyuan Zhang, Wenting Li, Wei Yuan, Hui Guo, Huafang Li, Guangxin Yang, Deling Kong, Donghui Zhu, Kazuki Takashima, Liqun Ruan, Jianfeng Nie, Xuan LiYufeng Zheng

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270 Citations (Scopus)


In the present study, pure zinc stents were implanted into the abdominal aorta of rabbits for 12 months. Multiscale analysis including micro-CT, scanning electron microscopy (SEM), scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM) and histological stainings was performed to reveal the fundamental degradation mechanism of the pure zinc stent and its biocompatibility. The pure zinc stent was able to maintain mechanical integrity for 6 months and degraded 41.75 ± 29.72% of stent volume after 12 months implantation. No severe inflammation, platelet aggregation, thrombosis formation or obvious intimal hyperplasia was observed at all time points after implantation. The degradation of the zinc stent played a beneficial role in the artery remodeling and healing process. The evolution of the degradation mechanism of pure zinc stents with time was revealed as follows: Before endothelialization, dynamic blood flow dominated the degradation of pure zinc stent, creating a uniform corrosion mode; After endothelialization, the degradation of pure zinc stent depended on the diffusion of water molecules, hydrophilic solutes and ions which led to localized corrosion. Zinc phosphate generated in blood flow transformed into zinc oxide and small amounts of calcium phosphate during the conversion of degradation microenvironment. The favorable physiological degradation behavior makes zinc a promising candidate for future stent applications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)92-105
Number of pages14
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2017


  • Biocompatibility
  • Degradation behavior
  • Degradation mechanism
  • Pure zinc stent
  • Rabbit abdominal aorta

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