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Stem Cells and Heart Disease

Human stem cells have shown great potential as a natural, autologoushealing tool. There are always new studies being conducted to discover areas of promise for stem cell therapies. Recently, a research was conducted in Hong Kong, to find ways to use stem cells to treat the damage of myocardial infarction in heart disease patients.

Last year, the City University of Hong Kong researchers announced that they had developed a stem cell procedure to rejuvenate both damaged heart tissue and the vascular system. The procedure uses two kinds of stem cells. While it in its early stages, the research looks promising.

Myocardial Infarction (MI)

You probably know myocardial infarction as ‘heart attack’. It causes irreversible damage to the heart muscle, scar formation and damaged cardiac function. Heart failure may become inevitable, in some cases.

For severe cases, the only treatment available is heart transplant. But transplants are extremely risky, there is no guarantee of positive outcomes and the lack of donors makes it too difficult to find a heart for every patient in need. In this scenario, a treatment that promises to reverse MI damage is welcome.

“Dr. Ban Kiwon, a stem cell biologist from Department of Biomedical Sciences at City University of Hong Kong, has been focusing on developing novel stem cell-based treatments for cardiac regeneration”. He explains that stem cell therapies for MI are best when they work both on repairing both cardiac muscle tissue as well as vasculatures at the same time. Simultaneous repair of both can enhance recovery for heart attack patients.

The researchers are working on a multi-pronged approach that uses two different kinds of stem cells to achieve simultaneous repair. These cells are mesenchymal stem cells (derived from human bone marrow) and induced pluripotent stem cells.

  • Mesenchymal stem cells are adult stem cells that have the ability to differentiate into different tissues of the same general type. For example, stem cells derived from adipose fat can be coaxed to turn into muscle tissue, since the two cells are of a similar type.
  • Induced pluripotent stem cells can differentiate into any of the five germ layers. These stem cells that have been induced in a lab setting to take on the properties of pluripotency.

The researchers introduced mesenchymal stem cells via a patch applied directly to the infarct area while the pluripotent cells were injected into the heart. The results of the study have been promising. Test animals show improved heart and vascular function and tissue regeneration.

To learn more about stem cell therapy, call the leading stem cell clinic in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles and Bay Area, Advanced Stem Cell Institute at 760-878-7136today! With office locations in Los Angeles, Encino, Rancho Cucamonga, Lancaster, Beverly Hills, Studio City, and San Francisco, Advanced Stem Cell Institute prides itself on helping people to achieve optimal health with the use of stem cell injections throughout California.

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