Journal of biomedical materials research. Part B, Applied biomaterials

Evaluation of chemical stability of polymers of XIENCE everolimus-eluting coronary stents in vivo by pyrolysis-gas chromatography/mass spectrometry.

PMID 28884951


The polymers poly(vinylidene fluoride-co-hexafluoropropylene) (PVDF-HFP) and poly(n-butyl methacrylate) (PBMA) are employed in manufacturing the XIENCE family of coronary stents. PBMA serves as a primer and adheres to both the stent and the drug coating. PVDF-HFP is employed in the drug matrix layer to hold the drug everolimus on the stent and control its release. Chemical stability of the polymers of XIENCE stents in the in-vivo environment was evaluated by pyrolysis-gas chromatography with mass spectrometry (Py-GC/MS) detection. For this evaluation, XIENCE stents explanted from porcine coronary arteries and from human coronary artery specimens at autopsy after 2-4 and 5-7 years of implantation, respectively, were compared to freshly manufactured XIENCE stents (controls). The comparison of pyrograms of explanted stent samples and controls showed identical fragmentation fingerprints of polymers, indicating that PVDF-HFP and PBMA maintained their chemical integrity after multiple years of XIENCE coronary stent implantation. The findings of the present study demonstrate the chemical stability of PVDF-HFP and PBMA polymers of the XIENCE family of coronary stents in the in-vivo environment, and constitute a further proof of the suitability of PVDF-HFP as a drug carrier for the drug eluting stent applications. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Biomed Mater Res Part B: Appl Biomater, 106B: 1721-1729, 2018.