MADRID, June 4 (Europa Press)
Researchers funded by the British Heart Foundation (BHF) have shown that & # 39; patches & # 39; of lab-grown hearts are safe to undergo testing on people with damaged hearts after a heart attack, according to research presented at the Society Conference. British Cardiovascular (BCS).
These patches may one day cure the debilitation of heart failure, which affects approximately 920,000 people in the UK alone and is increasing as more and more people survive a heart attack.
The researchers, led by Professor Sian Harding of Imperial College London, developed a way to develop thumb-sized patches of cardiac tissue (3 cm x 2 cm) containing up to 50 million human stem cells. Stem cells are programmed to become a functional heart muscle that can be seen as "beaten". One or more of these patches may be implanted in the heart of a patient after having had a heart attack to limitand until inverted the loss of pumping ability of the heart.
During a heart attack, the heart is deprived of vital nutrients and oxygen, which destroys parts of the heart muscle. This weakens the heart and can even lead to heart failure, a debilitating condition that causes even routine routine tasks such as climbing stairs or dressing, exhausting the patient.
In this last study, it has now been shown that these spots are safe in rabbits and lead to an improvement in cardiac function after a heart attack.
After a period of up to 4 weeks, detailed examinations showed that the left ventricle of the heart (the chamber responsible for pumping blood into the body through the aorta) was recovering without developing any abnormal heart rhythms, a potential side effect. . It is important to note that the patches appeared to be nourished by the blood vessels that grow in them from the recipient's heart.
Future steps will be to use these results to design clinical trials, first to test safety, and then to see if similar levels of cardiac repair can be achieved in people.
Once sewn into place, the patches are designed to physically support damaged heart muscle and help you pump more efficiently, while releasing natural chemicals that stimulate repair and regeneration of heart cells. Eventually, the adhesives should get into the damaged heart muscle and repair it.
The patches developed in response to somewhat disappointing results when stem cells were injected directly into the damaged heart muscle. Without a fixed patch, the stem cells are quickly eliminated from the heart, without reaching significant levels of repair.
However, this technology creates blemishes that begin to beat spontaneously after three days and begin to mimic mature heart tissue in a month. They can then be implanted into damaged hearts to help repair the muscle and restore vital pumping function of the heart.
Dr Richard Jabbour, who led the research at the BHF Center for Regenerative Medicine in London, said: "Someday we hope to add heart patches to treatments that doctors can give people after a heart attack. someone with heart failure. "
In this regard, Professor Metin Avkiran, associate medical director of the British Heart Foundation, who funded this research, says: "This is an excellent example of leading research in the world that has the potential to repair broken hearts and turn lives into If trials clinicians can show the benefits of these cardiac adhesives in people after a heart attack, will be a major breakthrough in regenerative medicine. "
"Due in large part to the research we funded," he adds, "more people survive heart attacks than ever before. But this means that there is an increasing number of people at risk of heart failure, since their hearts can not recover from the damage caused by the heart attack. Heart failure is a debilitating and transformative condition, with no cure, which makes daily tasks incredibly difficult. If we can fix the heart and help it heal, we can transform the perspective of these people. "
Claire Marie Berouche, a 52-year-old woman who developed heart failure after a heart attack when she was only 45, explains: "Living with heart failure has changed my life, I can not do the things I used to do, like shopping or just staying awake until late with my friends, new treatments like these potential heart patches give me hope that someday they could heal me and repair my broken heart. "