Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Stem cells therapy is a safe tool for mending broken hearts

02.09.2003


ESC Congress 2003: Stem cells – A tool for mending broken hearts?



We have shown that stem cell injections by catheters into diseased hearts are feasible and safe, even for very sick patients. Moreover, the results suggested strongly a potential ability of these cells to regenerate the arteries of the heart (called coronary arteries), and this regeneration improved the mechanical function of the heart, improving the heart failure condition of these patients. Since heart failure is a more aggressive killer than most cancers, and the fact that cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of mortality around the world, this could be a beginning of a “new era” in cardiovascular therapy.

Our study was carried out at Pró-Cardíaco Hospital (granted by the Filantropic Foundation of Teaching and Research of Pró-Cardíaco Hospital - PROCEP), in Rio de Janeiro, with a partnership with the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro and Texas Heart Institute. The experimental models were developed by the Federal University (granted by the Ministry of Science and Technology) and the injection system used to introduce the cells into the heart was developed by Johnson&Johnson, and tested in Houston.


We enrolled 21 patients in this study. All patients had an end stage coronary artery disease, which means no possibility of proceeding to a bypass surgery or to an angioplasty (treatment of the coronary arteries using a catheter). This advanced disease in coronary arteries is responsible for damages in the heart’s muscle, characterizing a heart failure condition.

The first 14 patients were submitted to an autologous transplantation of cells from bone marrow into the cardiac muscle, aiming to create new small arteries in the heart, which would make possible a more effective supply of blood to the damaged muscle. The other 7 patients were enrolled as a control group, and were followed up during the same one year period.

Considering the safety data, there were no major adverse effects observed in this group of patients. There was one death in the control group at the second week after the enrollment. In the treated group we observed two deaths, the first at the fourteenth week and the last one up to the ninth month of follow up. Both deaths could not be considered as related to the cell procedure, as analyzed by the Steering Committee of the study. Actually, the expected mortality for these patients is around 53% in 6 months.

Considering the efficacy data, the treated patients had a significant 71% reduction of the muscle areas with impaired blood supply, while we observed an increase of this parameter in the control group. The better blood supply allowed a 40% improvement of the heart’s mechanical function only observed on treated patients.

These improvements in blood supply and mechanical function reflected on patients’ quality of life as evaluated by a specific tool for this purpose (SF-36 – a general health evaluation questionnaire). This questionnaire evaluates 8 aspects of general health and its impact on patients’ quality of life. When comparing the patients’ data at baseline to the average data of the general American population, we observed a very low score in all 8 aspects. At 8 weeks of follow up we observed an improvement in 7 of the 8 aspects, which are comparable to the general American population average.

A subgroup of 5 patients was listed for heart transplant and at the end of six months of follow up, 4 of them did not match the clinical conditions to be eligible for the procedure. These data have social relevance once there isn’t a single heart transplant program around the world which is able to treat all patients who need it.

Since this is a phase I study with a small number of patients, our findings need to be confirmed in new studies oriented to the efficacy of this procedure, as randomized, double-blind, placebo controlled trials, with a larger number of patients.

Hans Fernando Rocha Dohmann MD, MBA
Pró-Cardíaco Hospital, Rio de Janeiro
Brazil

Important: This press release accompanies both a presentation and an ESC press conference given at the ESC Congress 2003. Written by the investigator himself/herself, this press release does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the European Society of Cardiology

Camilla Dormer | alfa
Further information:
http://www.escardio.org

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht How cancer metastasis happens: Researchers reveal a key mechanism
19.01.2018 | Weill Cornell Medicine

nachricht Researchers identify new way to unmask melanoma cells to the immune system
17.01.2018 | Duke University Medical Center

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Optical Nanoscope Allows Imaging of Quantum Dots

Physicists have developed a technique based on optical microscopy that can be used to create images of atoms on the nanoscale. In particular, the new method allows the imaging of quantum dots in a semiconductor chip. Together with colleagues from the University of Bochum, scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute reported the findings in the journal Nature Photonics.

Microscopes allow us to see structures that are otherwise invisible to the human eye. However, conventional optical microscopes cannot be used to image...

Im Focus: Artificial agent designs quantum experiments

On the way to an intelligent laboratory, physicists from Innsbruck and Vienna present an artificial agent that autonomously designs quantum experiments. In initial experiments, the system has independently (re)discovered experimental techniques that are nowadays standard in modern quantum optical laboratories. This shows how machines could play a more creative role in research in the future.

We carry smartphones in our pockets, the streets are dotted with semi-autonomous cars, but in the research laboratory experiments are still being designed by...

Im Focus: Scientists decipher key principle behind reaction of metalloenzymes

So-called pre-distorted states accelerate photochemical reactions too

What enables electrons to be transferred swiftly, for example during photosynthesis? An interdisciplinary team of researchers has worked out the details of how...

Im Focus: The first precise measurement of a single molecule's effective charge

For the first time, scientists have precisely measured the effective electrical charge of a single molecule in solution. This fundamental insight of an SNSF Professor could also pave the way for future medical diagnostics.

Electrical charge is one of the key properties that allows molecules to interact. Life itself depends on this phenomenon: many biological processes involve...

Im Focus: Paradigm shift in Paris: Encouraging an holistic view of laser machining

At the JEC World Composite Show in Paris in March 2018, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will be focusing on the latest trends and innovations in laser machining of composites. Among other things, researchers at the booth shared with the Aachen Center for Integrative Lightweight Production (AZL) will demonstrate how lasers can be used for joining, structuring, cutting and drilling composite materials.

No other industry has attracted as much public attention to composite materials as the automotive industry, which along with the aerospace industry is a driver...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

10th International Symposium: “Advanced Battery Power – Kraftwerk Batterie” Münster, 10-11 April 2018

08.01.2018 | Event News

See, understand and experience the work of the future

11.12.2017 | Event News

Innovative strategies to tackle parasitic worms

08.12.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Rutgers scientists discover 'Legos of life'

23.01.2018 | Life Sciences

Seabed mining could destroy ecosystems

23.01.2018 | Earth Sciences

Transportable laser

23.01.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>