Maglev centrifugal pumps have been used in the latest ventricular assist devices (VAD) and several experimental total artificial hearts (TAH). Compared to previous generation pumps, maglev pumps don’t have any moving parts (joints, bearings, etc.), which greatly reduces the risk of coagulation. However, the risk of blood clotting is still not eliminated. Normally the bloodstream is lined with vascular endothelial cells, which secret anticoagulants to prevent blood clotting in the vessels.
So I come up with an interesting idea. Can we prevent blood clotting by growing a single layer of endothelial cells on the surface of the stator and rotor? We have successfully cultured many animal cells. By adding a few animal cells and culture medium into a bottle, the cells will grow into a single layer of cells along the smooth surface of the bottle. Because there is no moving part inside maglev pumps, it would not be difficult for endothelial cells to adhere onto the surfaces. The blood can serve as an ideal culture medium which provides nutrition and carries away metabolic wastes. So if we can grow endothelial cells on VAD or TAH, will it eliminate the need to take anticoagulants?