STANFORD, Calif. Researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine, in collaboration with BioParadox, Inc., have published data supporting the use of platelet-rich plasma as a promising biologic treatment for myocardial infarction (heart attack).
The findings were published online in Cardiovascular Revascularization Medicine and will be presented at The Sixth International Conference on Cell Therapy for Cardiovascular Disease at Columbia University Medical Center, New York City, on January 20, 2011.
Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) has been identified as a novel biologic treatment for wound healing and sports-related injuries. Studies indicate PRP stimulates cell repair via growth factor release and by attracting reparative cells. Only recently, however, have scientists begun to study PRP's potential in repairing damaged cardiovascular tissue.
Working with colleagues at Stanford University Medical Center, lead author Allan Mishra, MD, a leading PRP researcher, studied the effects of RevaTen PRP (a proprietary formulation of concentrated platelets and white blood cells) on cardiac function after inducing cardiac ischemia (damage to myocardial tissue caused by blood restriction) in mice. The research was conducted under the direction of Robert Robbins, MD, chairman of the department of cardiothoracic surgery at Stanford University.
In this study of 28 mice, researchers induced ischemia by either permanently occluding the left anterior descending artery (Group A) or temporarily ligating it for 45 minutes (Group B). The hearts were then injected with RevaTen PRP or saline control. In order to assess cardiac function after treatment, magnetic resonance images were taken at seven days post-procedure (Group A) and 21 days (Group B). Tissue from all hearts was collected for histopathologic evaluation.
In both groups, mice that received PRP after ischemia had significantly better cardiac function as measured by left ventricular ejection fraction on MRI than those that had been injected with saline only. In group A, the RevaTen-treated animals had 38% better ejection fraction compared to saline controls. In group B, the RevaTen-treated animals had 28% improvement in ejection fraction compared to controls. Additionally, less scar tissue was found in RevaTen-treated hearts than in controls.
"Although this is an observational study using an animal model, PRP might someday be employed at the point of care to treat patients who have had a heart attack. This could preserve cardiac function and limit the progression to congestive heart failure," Dr. Mishra says. "Since myocardial infarction remains the leading cause of death in industrial nations, RevaTen PRP may become a powerful biologic tool in fighting heart disease and provide cost savings." The authors caution that this is a preclinical study and that further translational research is needed to understand how RevaTen PRP might work to repair and/or protect cardiovascular tissue.
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