View Full Version : Stem cell treatment effective in heart patients

03-28-2009, 11:37 AM
Study: Stem cell treatment effective in heart patients
March 28, 2009 11:29 AM | 4 Comments

A stem cell treatment designed to regenerate the heart led to less discomfort and an "improved tolerance" for exercise in patients suffering severe heart disease and chest pain known as angina, a study announced today that is led by Northwestern University and sponsored by Baxter International Inc. shows.

Nearly 170 adult patients were studied for six months after having their own stem cells injected into their hearts. Although still early in research, researchers conducting the trial say the results are significant enough that research will continue into a critical final stage with a larger group of patients studied.

"The six-month, phase II data provide the first evidence that a patient's own stem cells could actually be used as a treatment for their heart disease," said Dr. Douglas Losordo, director of Northwestern University's Feinberg Cardiovascular Research Institute.

After a final phase, Deerfield-based Baxter would then decide, likely within the next five years, whether to submit the product to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for possible approval. The study presented today was announced in Orlando at the annual meeting of the American College of Cardiology.

Losordo has been working with Baxter on the process of using adult stem cells to create new blood vessels in the cardiovascular system. The study is designed to investigate whether injecting adult stem cells directly into the heart can help patients rebound from severe coronary artery disease.

The research involves use of Baxter's Isolex cell separation and selection system to extract stem cells from the many types of cells in bone marrow. The cells, once carefully isolated using the machine, are then injected directly into the heart via catheter in hopes of regenerating damaged areas that trigger heart failure.

Stem cells are building-block cells that are able to develop into many different types of specialized cells. They serve as a sort of repair system for the body, and theoretically can divide without limit to replenish other cells as long as the person or animal is alive.

Supporters of stem cell research believe blood vessels leading to the heart can be rebuilt and that damaged areas of the heart can be regenerated.

Still, industry analysts and researchers involved in the Northwestern and Baxter research say there is a long way to go. Losordo said the results presented today, "while encouraging, are not yet definitive and require verification in a larger study."

03-28-2009, 10:19 PM
This is great!!

Thanks a lot for posting this Danny !!!!