We created a novel continuous infusion system to evaluate the efficacy of juxta-aortic doxycycline delivery as a transitional step toward developing hybrid drug/device treatment strategies for abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) disease.Controlled comparison of treatment outcomes was studied in animal models with molecular and morphologic tissue analysis in a collaboration between university and corporate research laboratories. Rat AAAs were created via porcine pancreatic elastase (PPE) infusion and grouped and analyzed by subsequent treatment status (either doxycycline in vehicle or vehicle alone) and drug delivery method (continuous infusion via periaortic delivery system [PDS] or twice-daily subcutaneous injection). The main outcome measures were AAA diameter via direct measurement, medial elastin lamellar preservation via light microscopy, mural smooth muscle cell (SMC) proliferation and SMC and macrophage density via immunostaining and counting, expression of matrix metalloproteinases 2, 9, and 14 and tissue inhibitors of metalloproteinases 1 and 2 via real-time reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction, and enzymatic activity via substrate zymography. Serum drug levels were analyzed via liquid chromatography/mass spectroscopy.PDS (1.5 mg/kg/day) and subcutaneous (60 mg/kg/day) delivery methods caused comparable reductions in AAA diameter during the period of 14 days after PPE infusion. PDS rats gained more weight during the postoperative period (P <.001), possibly as a result of reduced serum drug levels and systemic toxicity. Doxycycline treatment reduced AAA macrophage infiltration and SMC proliferation significantly. Despite reduced diameter, circumferential elastic lamellar preservation was not apparent in doxycycline-treated AAAs.Continuous periaortic infusion lowers the effective doxycycline dose for experimental AAA limitation. Alternative biologic inhibition strategies might also be amenable to direct intra-aortic or juxta-aortic delivery. Periaortic infusion might improve the clinical outcome of minimally invasive AAA treatment strategies. Clinical relevance Aneurysm remodeling may continue after successful endovascular AAA exclusion. Continued proteolytic activity within the aneurysm wall potentiates late graft migration and failure. The doxycycline infusion system developed in these experiments may serve as a prototype for adjuvant treatment modalities that complement endovascular AAA exclusion. Local delivery of doxycycline or other agents active in AAA disease, either continuously or at selected intervals after graft implantation, may stabilize the wall and aid in maintaining aneurysm exclusion. Alternative delivery methods could include passive diffusion from either the graft material itself or treatment reservoirs incorporated into endografts. Given the recognized limitations of current technologies, adjuvant biologic therapies have the potential to improve long-term patient outcome significantly after endovascular exclusion.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jvs.2004.01.036
View details for Web of Science ID 000222018600026
View details for PubMedID 15192574