Modelling the impact of atherosclerosis on drug release and distribution from coronary stents

McKittrick, C.M. and Kennedy, S. and Oldroyd, K. G. and McGinty, S. and McCormick, C. (2015) Modelling the impact of atherosclerosis on drug release and distribution from coronary stents. Annals of Biomedical Engineering, 44 (2). pp. 477-487. ISSN 0090-6964 (

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Although drug-eluting stents (DES) are now widely used for the treatment of coronary heart disease, there remains considerable scope for the development of enhanced designs which address some of the limitations of existing devices. The drug release profile is a key element governing the overall performance of DES. The use of in vitro, in vivo, ex vivo, in silico and mathematical models has enhanced understanding of the factors which govern drug uptake and distribution from DES. Such work has identified the physical phenomena determining the transport of drug from the stent and through tissue, and has highlighted the importance of stent coatings and drug physical properties to this process. However, there is limited information regarding the precise role that the atherosclerotic lesion has in determining the uptake and distribution of drug. In this review, we start by discussing the various models that have been used in this research area, highlighting the different types of information they can provide. We then go on to describe more recent methods that incorporate the impact of atherosclerotic lesions.