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A method of sterilizing and preserving fresh allograft heart valves
  1. Eunice Lockey,
  2. Nawal Ai-Janabi,
  3. Lorenzo Gonzalez-Lavin1,
  4. D. N. Ross
  1. Department of Clinical Pathology, National Heart Hospital, London
  2. Department of Surgery, National Heart Hospital, London
  3. Institute of Cardiology, London


    The present study was undertaken to find an antibiotic mixture which would rapidly and completely sterilize a heavily contaminated allograft heart valve without reducing its viability. Two different antibiotic combinations were used; formula A was used for 66 valves and formula B for 60 valves. Viability of the valves was assessed by autoradiography and tissue culture, and was found to be similar in both formulae. Formula B proved more effective; all valves were sterile after 24 hours' exposure to the antibiotics and remained so thereafter.

    The period of viability was greatly extended when a nutrient medium was used to store the valves.

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    • 1 Please address all correspondence to: Lorenzo Gonzalez-Lavin, M.D., Institute of Cardiology, 2 Beaumont Street, London W1N 2DX