Heart Repair Using Stem Cells

by Abigail B. September 17th, 2007 | Heart Health
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One of the hot topics in health news is Stem Cells being used in research.

It has been believed that the human heart is unable to repair itself after a heart attack or injury, causing one to need life cover. New research refutes that belief. Because stem cells can be rejected as a foreign body by ones immune system, stem cells were taken from the bone marrow of a mouse to be implanted in the heart of the same mouse. A heart attack was induced to the mouse and the stem cells were introduced directly in the heart.

There was significant improvement in heart functioning. This successful experiment is a precursor to trials of human subjects which are planned to begin within a year.

A company called Advanced Cell Technology that is based in Worcester Mass has taken stem cells and turned them into beating heart cells. . They are also trying to create transplantable patches for repairing large areas of heart damage.

Advanced Cell Technology has as its focus to produce young cells for the treatment of cell degenerative diseases. They use nuclear transfer (cloning) technology to produce healthy cells or tissue of any type with an identical match to the patient’s own DNA. A patient’s immune system would reject cells if they were not developed in this way. Their technology with stem cells regenerates the cell life span, which thereby makes “young” cells available for aging patients.

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