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Potential heart benefit found in stem cells

a heart attack."

Beneficial Effect of Combined Intramyocardial and Intracoronary Administration of Autologous Stem Cells on Global and Regional Left Ventricular Function and Myocardial Perfusion in Patients with Ischaemic Cardiomyopathy (Abstract 934-173)

Yet another potential new source for stem cells to be used for cardiac therapy is the bone marrow. To improve global left ventricular ejection fraction (EF, the volume of blood pumped out of the heart's main chamber during a single beat) and regional left ventricular wall motion, which is related to ejection fraction, researchers evaluated a treatment with bone marrow-derived cells, attempting to clarify the extent of stress-induced or rest perfusion defect (scar tissue) in patients with ischemic cardiomyopathy, or blockages in the arteries leading to the heart infarction.

In the study, 17 patients with ischemic cardiomyopathy were treated with a combined percutaneous injection (both intramyocardial and intracoronary, either the heart muscle or the heart's artery) of bone marrow-derived mononuclear cells. At baseline and follow-up evaluation, the investigators reviewed the myocardial viability and local wall motion abnormalities, as well as the size of resting and stress-induced perfusion defects. They also measured the global EF and the wall motion score index, which measures the percentage of normal functioning muscle tissue in the heart wall.

The combined stem cell injection resulted in an increase in global EF, (from 34.8 to 39.5 percent), as well as a significant increase in wall motion at the six-month follow up. The team noted a trend to smaller stress-induced defects, and found that the number of bone-marrow stem cells injected was positively related to the follow-up EF levels, and negatively correlated to the stress-induced and resting perfusion defects.

"In at-risk patients, combined treatment with bone-marrow derived stem cells may offer an effective a
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Source:American College of Cardiology


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