The cytotoxicity of corrosion products of nitinol stent wire on cultured smooth muscle cells

Chun Che Shih, Shing Jong Lin*, Yuh Lien Chen, Yea Yang Su, Shiau Ting Lai, Gaston J. Wu, Ching Fai Kwok, Kwok Hung Chung

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

198 Citations (Scopus)


Although nitinol is one of most popular materials of intravascular stents, there are still few confirmative biocompatibility data available, especially in vascular smooth muscle cells. In this report, the nitinol wires were corroded in Dulbecco's modified Eagle's medium with constant electrochemical breakdown voltage and the supernatant and precipitates of corrosion products were prepared as culture media. The dose and time effects of different concentrations of corrosion products on the growth and morphology of smooth muscle cells were evaluated with [3H]-thymidine uptake ratio and cell cycle sorter. Both the supernatant and precipitate of the corrosive products of nitinol wire were toxic to the primary cultured rat aortic smooth muscle cells. The growth inhibition was correlated well with the increased concentrations of the corrosion products. Although small stimulation was found with released nickel Concentration of 0.95 ± 0.23 ppm, the growth inhibition became significant when the nickel concentration was above 9 ppm. The corrosion products also altered cell morphology, induced cell necrosis, and decreased cell numbers. The cell replication was inhibited at the G0-G1 to S transition phase. This was the first study to demonstrate the cytotoxicity of corrosion products of current nitinol stent wire on smooth muscle cells, which might affect the postimplantation neointimal hyperplasia and the patency rate of cardiovascular stents. (C) 2000 John Wiley and Sons, Inc.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)395-403
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Biomedical Materials Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2000 Nov


  • Corrosion
  • Cytotoxicity
  • Nickel
  • Nitinol
  • Smooth muscle cell

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Engineering


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