Navigation Links
Study Hints at Stem Cells From Belly Fat as Treatment for Heart Attack

By Amanda Gardner
HealthDay Reporter

TUESDAY, Nov. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Stem cells taken from the belly fat of 10 heart attack patients managed to improve several measures of heart function, Dutch researchers report.

This is the first time this type of therapy has been used in humans, said the scientists, who presented their findings Tuesday at the American Heart Association's annual meeting in Chicago.

But the improvements, though relatively dramatic in this small group of patients, were not statistically significant, probably due to the limited number of participants in the study. And another expert urged caution when interpreting the results.

"The key issue is whether a treatment makes us live longer or feel better," said Dr. Jeffrey S. Borer, chair of the department of medicine and of cardiovascular medicine at the State University of New York (SUNY) Downstate Medical Center in New York City.

This study only looked at "surrogates," meaning measures of heart function that might predict better future health in the patient, he said.

"This cannot be interpreted as if they directly represent positive clinical outcomes," Borer said. "These certainly are promising stem cell data, but there's a great deal more to do before it is possible to know whether this is a viable therapy."

Another caveat: All the patients in this trial were white Europeans. The study authors believe the results could be extrapolated to much of the U.S. population, but not necessarily to people who aren't white.

Fat tissue yields many more stem cells than bone marrow (which has been studied before) and is much easier to access.

In bone marrow, 40 cubic centimeters (cc) typically yield about 25,000 stem cells, which is "not nearly enough to treat people with," said study author Dr. Eric Duckers, head of the Molecular Cardiology Laboratory at Thoraxcenter, Erasmus University Medical Center in Rotterdam. To get enough cells to work with, those stem cells would have to be cultured, a process that can take six to eight weeks, he said.

By contrast, 100 cc's of fat tissue yield millions of stem cells, plenty to work with. A hundred cc's is about the size of a coffee cup -- a European coffee cup, not the mega-size of American coffee containers, Duckers emphasized.

"With that many cells, you can isolate them and give them to the patient right away as they come into the hospital," he explained.

All patients in this double-blind, placebo-controlled study (11 men and three women) arrived at the hospital having suffered a severe heart attack. All then underwent cardiac catheterization to assess blood flow, followed by percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI), more commonly known as angioplasty, to restore blood flow.

Within 24 hours of the heart attack, doctors performed liposuction to remove fat tissue, isolated 20 million stem cells and gave them back to the patients through a catheter. The infusion took no more than 10 minutes. Ten patients received stem cells and four received a placebo infusion.

"It was done very, very quickly, all in the same day," Duckers said.

Six months after the procedure, stem cell patients had better blood flow (more than triple the rate compared to patients getting a placebo), a 5.7 percent increase in heart pumping ability, and a 50 percent reduction in scarring of heart muscle (from 31.6 percent right after the heart attack to 15.4 percent). Placebo patients saw no decrease in scarring.

"In theory," Borer said, "the use of stem cells to improve myocardial perfusion [blood flow] and cardiac performance is very promising... but to the present time, although many approaches to stem cell use have been tested, there really has not yet been evidence of a clinically useful important result. That doesn't mean that stem cell research isn't an important lead to follow."

The Dutch research team is now embarking on a trial that will ultimately enroll 375 heart attack patients at 35 medical centers in the European Union to further test stem cell infusions.

The study was funded by Cytori Therapeutics Inc.

More information

The U.S. National Institutes of Health has more on stem cells.

SOURCES: Eric (HJ) Duckers, M.D., Ph.D., head, Molecular Cardiology Laboratory, Thoraxcenter, Erasmus University Medical Center, Rotterdam, the Netherlands; Jeffrey S. Borer, M.D., chair, department of medicine and of cardiovascular medicine, State University of New York (SUNY) Downstate Medical Center, New York City; Nov. 16, 2010, presentation, American Heart Association annual meeting, Chicago

Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Cancer Risk From Radiation of Mammograms Is Slight: Study
2. Increased age of sexual consent in Canada may not protect teens at greatest risk: UBC study
3. Adding pharmacists to docs offices helps patient outcomes, study shows
4. Early Pot Use May Harm Brain More: Study
5. Stressful Jobs May Raise Womens Heart Attack Risk, Study Finds
6. Prostate cancer treatment linked to higher rate of colon cancer, study finds
7. Minneapolis Study Points to Sharp Drop in Smoking Rates
8. Brain Organizes Itself for Introspection as Children Age: Study
9. Poor sleep quality increases inflammation, community study finds
10. Penn study: Hospital CPR quality is worse at night
11. Vitamin D Shortage Not Tied to Stroke Deaths in Blacks: Study
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 27, 2015 , ... The rapid speed ... As people age, more care is needed, especially with Alzheimer’s, dementia and other ... are being overworked. The forgotten part of this equation: 80 percent of medical ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... ... Lizzie’s Lice Pickers just announced a special promotion that will run throughout ... of lice treatment product. In addition, customers will receive a complimentary head Check when ... is a sure way to ruin the holidays, so we encourage all of our ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... Fairfax, VVA (PRWEB) , ... November 27, 2015 ... ... (RBMA) motto of progress through sharing, the 2016 Building Better Radiology ... campaigns. The conference will begin on Sunday, March 6, 2016, at Caesars Palace ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... Bangalore, Karnataka (PRWEB) , ... November 27, 2015 ... ... the world, Health-E-minds, an innovative online platform for mental health and wellness consultation, ... KleverKid. , This partnership will bridge the knowledge gap experienced by parents and ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 27, 2015 , ... Avid collector, Andrew Hawley ... Michigan boxing style concert posters. This is one of Joplin's most famous and beautiful ... at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. The According to Hawley, "It is ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/26/2015)... , November 26, 2015 ... the addition of the  "2016 Future ... Global Cell Surface Testing Market: Supplier ... to their offering.  --> ... of the  "2016 Future Horizons and ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... 26, 2015 ... of the  "2016 Future Horizons and ... Drug Monitoring (TDM) Market: Supplier Shares, ... Opportunities"  report to their offering.  ... the addition of the  "2016 Future ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... , November 26, 2015 ... of the "Radioimmunoassay Market by Type ... Pharmaceutical Industry, Academics, Clinical Diagnostic Labs), Application ... Forecast to 2020" report to their ... announced the addition of the "Radioimmunoassay ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: