Progress being made in exploring potential use of stem cells to treat heart disease

June 28, 2006

Scientists are making headway in exploring the potential future use of stem cells to treat heart disease, according to a review article in the current issue of Nature (June 29, 2006).

Authored by Gladstone Institute of Cardiovascular Disease Director Deepak Srivastava, MD, and Gladstone Institutes postdoctoral scholar Kathryn Ivey, PhD, the paper cites a better understanding of the following areas of research: "The use of stem cells to generate replacement cells for damaged heart muscle, valves, vessels and conduction cells holds great potential," says Srivastava, who is also a UCSF professor of pediatrics and the Wilma and Adeline Pirag Distinguished Professor in Pediatric Developmental Cardiology. "Although there are clearly many obstacles to overcome, it is significant that a roadmap of the derivation and use of stem cells for human heart disease is now conceivable."

In the Nature article, Srivastava and Ivey point to several challenges ahead: "Exciting new findings over the past 5 years indicate that stem cells could prove effective as protective or regenerative cardiac therapies," says Ivey, who was named in April one of seven current postdoctoral fellows participating in the Gladstone's new stem cell training program, funded by the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine. "The adult heart seems to have reservoirs of cardiac progenitor cells--adult stem cells that are destined to become cardiovascular cells--that may be able to replace a slow loss of cells over a lifetime. The coming years will undoubtedly bring new developments and technologies to unravel these processes, leading to clinical applications of stem cell-based therapies for heart disease."
-end-
GICD is one of three research institutes of The J. David Gladstone Institutes, a private, nonprofit biomedical research institution. It is affiliated with UCSF, a leading university that consistently defines health care worldwide by conducting advanced biomedical research, educating graduate students in the life sciences, and providing complex patient care. For further information, visit www.gladstone.ucsf.edu and www.ucsf.edu.

Gladstone Institutes

Related Stem Cells Articles from Brightsurf:

SUTD researchers create heart cells from stem cells using 3D printing
SUTD researchers 3D printed a micro-scaled physical device to demonstrate a new level of control in the directed differentiation of stem cells, enhancing the production of cardiomyocytes.

More selective elimination of leukemia stem cells and blood stem cells
Hematopoietic stem cells from a healthy donor can help patients suffering from acute leukemia.

Computer simulations visualize how DNA is recognized to convert cells into stem cells
Researchers of the Hubrecht Institute (KNAW - The Netherlands) and the Max Planck Institute in Münster (Germany) have revealed how an essential protein helps to activate genomic DNA during the conversion of regular adult human cells into stem cells.

First events in stem cells becoming specialized cells needed for organ development
Cell biologists at the University of Toronto shed light on the very first step stem cells go through to turn into the specialized cells that make up organs.

Surprising research result: All immature cells can develop into stem cells
New sensational study conducted at the University of Copenhagen disproves traditional knowledge of stem cell development.

The development of brain stem cells into new nerve cells and why this can lead to cancer
Stem cells are true Jacks-of-all-trades of our bodies, as they can turn into the many different cell types of all organs.

Healthy blood stem cells have as many DNA mutations as leukemic cells
Researchers from the Princess Máxima Center for Pediatric Oncology have shown that the number of mutations in healthy and leukemic blood stem cells does not differ.

New method grows brain cells from stem cells quickly and efficiently
Researchers at Lund University in Sweden have developed a faster method to generate functional brain cells, called astrocytes, from embryonic stem cells.

NUS researchers confine mature cells to turn them into stem cells
Recent research led by Professor G.V. Shivashankar of the Mechanobiology Institute at the National University of Singapore and the FIRC Institute of Molecular Oncology in Italy, has revealed that mature cells can be reprogrammed into re-deployable stem cells without direct genetic modification -- by confining them to a defined geometric space for an extended period of time.

Researchers develop a new method for turning skin cells into pluripotent stem cells
Researchers at the University of Helsinki, Finland, and Karolinska Institutet, Sweden, have for the first time succeeded in converting human skin cells into pluripotent stem cells by activating the cell's own genes.

Read More: Stem Cells News and Stem Cells Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.