Disinfection of human cardiac valve allografts in tissue banking: systematic review report Journal Articles uri icon

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  • Cardiovascular allografts are usually disinfected using antibiotics, but protocols vary significantly between tissue banks. It is likely that different disinfection protocols will not have the same level of efficacy; they may also have varying effects on the structural integrity of the tissue, which could lead to significant differences in terms of clinical outcome in recipients. Ideally, a disinfection protocol should achieve the greatest bioburden reduction with the lowest possible impact on tissue integrity. We conducted a systematic review of methods applied to disinfect cardiovascular tissues. The use of multiple broad spectrum antibiotics in conjunction with an antifungal agent resulted in the greatest reduction in bioburden. Antibiotic incubation periods were limited to less than 24 h, and most protocols incubated tissues at 4 °C, however one study demonstrated a greater reduction of microbial load at 37 °C. None of the reviewed studies looked at the impact of these disinfection protocols on the risk of infection or any other clinical outcome in recipients.


  • Germain, M
  • Strong, DM
  • Dowling, G
  • Mohr, J
  • Duong, A
  • Garibaldi, A
  • Simunovic, N
  • Ayeni, Olufemi

publication date

  • December 2016