JoVE Logo
Faculty Resource Center

Sign In





Representative Results






Veno-Venous Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation in a Mouse

Published: October 24th, 2018



1Department of Cardiothoracic, Transplantation, and Vascular Surgery, Hannover Medical School, 2Department of Pneumology, Hannover Medical School
* These authors contributed equally

Here we present a protocol describing the technique of veno-venous extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) in a non-intubated, spontaneously breathing mouse. This murine model of ECMO can be effectively implemented in experimental studies of acute and end-stage lung diseases.

The use of extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) has increased substantially in recent years. ECMO has become a reliable and effective therapy for acute as well as end-stage lung diseases. With the increase in clinical demand and prolonged use of ECMO, procedural optimization and prevention of multi-organ damage are of critical importance. The aim of this protocol is to present a detailed technique of veno-venous ECMO in a non-intubated, spontaneously breathing mouse. This protocol demonstrates the technical design of the ECMO and surgical steps. This murine ECMO model will facilitate the study of pathophysiology related to ECMO (e.g., inflammation,bleeding and thromboembolic events). Due to the abundance of genetically modified mice, the molecular mechanisms involved in ECMO-related complications can also be dissected.

Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) is a temporary life support system that takes over functions of the lungs and heart to allow adequate gas exchange and perfusion. Hill et al1 described the first use of ECMO in patients in 1972; however, it only became widely used after its successful application during the H1N1 influenza pandemic in 20092. Today, ECMO is routinely used as a lifesaving procedure in end-stage heart and lung diseases3. Veno-venous ECMO is increasingly employed as an alternative to invasive mechanical ventilation in awake, non-intubated, spontaneously breathing patients with....

Log in or to access full content. Learn more about your institution’s access to JoVE content here

Experiments were performed on male C57BL/6 mice, aged 12 weeks. This study was conducted in compliance with guidelines of the German Animal Law under Protocol TSA 16/2250.

1. Materials Preparation

NOTE: All steps are performed under clean, non-sterile conditions. Sterile conditions would be required if animal is to be survived postoperatively.

  1. Introduce 3 fenestrations into a 2-Fr polyurethane tube using a surgical blade under a microscope with 16X .......

Log in or to access full content. Learn more about your institution’s access to JoVE content here

This protocol describes the method of veno-venous ECMO in a mouse. This model is reliable and reproducible, and compared to our previously described model of CPB with respiratory and circulatory arrest12,13, it is less technically demanding to establish.

ECMO flow in the venous system was maintained between 1.5 and 5 mL/min. The mean arterial pressure was kept between 70.......

Log in or to access full content. Learn more about your institution’s access to JoVE content here

Previously, we described a successful model of CPB in a mouse12,13. To implement such a model for acute or end-stage lung disorders we developed an easy-to-use veno-venous ECMO circuit for mice. Different to the CPB model, veno-venous ECMO does not require complicated surgical procedures such as sternotomy and clamping of the aorta, thus reducing the risk of wound bleeding in a fully heparinized animal. To avoid embolization of the oxygenator with blood clots, 2........

Log in or to access full content. Learn more about your institution’s access to JoVE content here

This project was supported by KFO 311 Grant from Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft.


Log in or to access full content. Learn more about your institution’s access to JoVE content here

Name Company Catalog Number Comments
Sterofundin B.Braun Petzold GmbH PZN:8609189 in 1:1 with Tetraspan
Tetraspan 6% Solution B. Braun Melsungen AG PZN: 05565416 in 1:1 with Sterofundin
Heparin Natrium 25.000 Ratiopharm GmbH PZN: 3029843 2,5 IU per ml of priming
NaHCO3 8,4% Solution B. Braun Melsungen AG PZN: 1579775 3% in priming solution
Carprofen Zoetis Inc., USA PZN:00289615 5mg/kg/BW
1 Fr PU Catheter Instechlabs INC., USA C10PU-MCA1301 carotide artery
2 Fr PU Catheter Instechlabs INC., USA C20PU-MJV1302 jugular vein
8-0 Silk suture braided Ashaway Line & Twine Co., USA 75290 ligature
Isoflurane Piramal Critical Care GmbH PZN:9714675 narcosis
Spring Scissors - 6mm Blades Fine Science Tools GmbH 15020-15 instruments
Spring Scissors - 2mm Blades Fine Science Tools GmbH 15000-03 instruments
Halsted-Mosquito Hemostat Fine Science Tools GmbH 13009-12 instruments
Dumont #55 Forceps Fine Science Tools GmbH 11295-51 instruments
Castroviejo Micro Needle Holder - 9cm Fine Science Tools GmbH 12060-02 instruments
Micro Serrefines Fine Science Tools GmbH 18555-01 instruments
Bulldog Serrefine Fine Science Tools GmbH 18050-28 instruments
Isoflurane Vaporizer Drager 19.1 Drägerwerk AG & Co. KGaA anesthesia 1,3 -2,5%
Multichannel Data Aquisition Device with ISOHEART Software Hugo Sachs Elektronik GmbH, Germany invasive pressure, ECG, t °C
i-STAT portable device Abbott Laboratories, Lake Bluff, Illinois, USA blood gas analysis
i-STAT CG4+ and CG8+ cartridges Abbott Laboratories, Lake Bluff, Illinois, USA blood gas analysis
C57Bl/6 mice, male, 30 g, 14 weeks old Charles River Laboratories housed 1 week before

  1. Hill, J. D., et al. Prolonged Extracorporeal Oxygenation for Acute Post-Traumatic Respiratory Failure (Shock-Lung Syndrome). New England Journal of Medicine. 286 (12), 629-634 (1972).
  2. Noah, M. A., et al. Referral to an Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation Center and Mortality Among Patients With Severe 2009 Influenza A(H1N1). Journal of the American Medical Association. 306 (15), 1659 (2011).
  3. Maslach-Hubbard, A., Bratton, S. L. Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation for pediatric respiratory failure: History, development and current status. World Journal of Critical. Care Medicine. 2 (4), 29-39 (2013).
  4. Langer, T., et al. "Awake" extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO): pathophysiology, technical considerations, and clinical pioneering. Critical Care. 20 (1), 150 (2016).
  5. Esper, S. A. Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation. Advances in Anesthesia. 35 (1), 119-143 (2017).
  6. Millar, J. E., Fanning, J. P., McDonald, C. I., McAuley, D. F., Fraser, J. F. The inflammatory response to extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO): a review of the pathophysiology. Critical Care. 20 (1), 387 (2016).
  7. Lubnow, M., et al. Technical complications during veno-venous extracorporeal membrane oxygenation and their relevance predicting a system-exchange--retrospective analysis of 265 cases. Public Library of Science One. 9 (12), e112316 (2014).
  8. Passmore, M. R., et al. Inflammation and lung injury in an ovine model of extracorporeal membrane oxygenation support. American Journal of Physiology - Lung Cellular and Molecular Physiology. 311 (6), L1202-L1212 (2016).
  9. Vaquer, S., de Haro, C., Peruga, P., Oliva, J. C., Artigas, A. Systematic review and meta-analysis of complications and mortality of veno-venous extracorporeal membrane oxygenation for refractory acute respiratory distress syndrome. Annals of Intensive Care. 7 (1), 51 (2017).
  10. Houser, S. R., et al. Animal Models of Heart Failure A Scientific Statement From the American Heart Association. Circulation Research. 111 (1), 131-150 (2012).
  11. Russell, J. C., Proctor, S. D. Small animal models of cardiovascular disease: tools for the study of the roles of metabolic syndrome, dyslipidemia, and atherosclerosis. Cardiovascular Pathology. 15 (6), 318-330 (2006).
  12. Madrahimov, N., et al. Novel mouse model of cardiopulmonary bypass. European Journal of Cardio-thoracic Surgery. 53 (1), 186-193 (2017).
  13. Madrahimov, N., et al. Cardiopulmonary Bypass in a Mouse Model: A Novel Approach. J. Journal of Visualized Experiments. (127), (2017).

This article has been published

Video Coming Soon

JoVE Logo


Terms of Use





Copyright © 2024 MyJoVE Corporation. All rights reserved