UF researchers test stem cell therapy for heart patientsOctober 04, 2007
GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- University of Florida doctors on Wednesday (Oct. 3) treated their first patient enrolled in a new study designed to test whether injecting stem cells into the heart helps restore blood flow to the organ by prompting new blood vessels to grow.
UF researchers plan to test the experimental therapy in people with severe coronary artery disease and daily chest pain who have not responded to traditional medications or surgical procedures designed to restore blood flow, such as angioplasty or bypass surgery.
"The general idea is that by providing these cells of blood vessel origin, we hope to either generate new blood vessels from the growth of these implanted cells or stimulate the heart to regenerate new blood vessels from the cells that reside in it," said study investigator Carl J. Pepine, M.D., chief of cardiovascular medicine at UF's College of Medicine. "It's not completely clear whether it's the actual cell itself that would do this or whether it's just the milieu and the chemical signals that occur from the cells that would result in this."
Each year, nearly half a million Americans with heart disease experience severe chest pain because coronary arteries and the smaller vessels that supply oxygen-rich blood to the heart muscle become narrowed or blocked by plaque deposits or clots. These blockages can trigger mini-heart attacks that, while too small to be noticed as they occur, over time irreversibly damage the heart -- leading to disability, progressive heart failure or even death.
In the prospective, double-blind, placebo-controlled study, known as the Autologous Cellular Therapy CD34-Chronic Myocardial Ischemia Trial, or ACT34-CMI, UF researchers will study 15 Shands at UF medical center patients to determine whether a person's own stem cells can be used to effectively and safely treat chronic reductions in blood flow to the heart, improving symptoms and long-term outcomes. They also will evaluate whether participants report improved quality of life and exercise tolerance, and whether the heart functions better.
Participants will undergo screening tests and then receive a series of injections of a protein that releases stem cells from the bone marrow into the bloodstream. The cells, known as CD34+ stem cells, help spur blood vessel growth and are harvested from the patient during a procedure called apheresis, said Chris Cogle, an assistant professor of medicine at the UF's College of Medicine Program in Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine.
Participants will then be randomly assigned to receive one of two dosing levels of the cells, or a placebo.
"Physicians will use a catheter-based electrical mapping system to find muscle they think is still viable but not functioning," said R. David Anderson, an associate professor of medicine at UF and director of interventional cardiology. "The cells are injected into viable sites in the heart, which have poor blood flow, in the cardiac catheterization laboratory at Shands at UF medical center."
Patients will be periodically evaluated by echocardiography and magnetic resonance imaging over the course of a year after the procedure. Although to date study subjects have tolerated this procedure well, potential risks include infection, allergic reactions, bleeding, blood clots and damage to the heart or its vessels.
UF is one of 20 research sites participating in the national study, which is evaluating a total of 150 patients and is sponsored by the Cellular Therapies business unit of Baxter Healthcare Corp. and led by principal investigator Douglas Losordo, M.D., of Northwestern University's Feinberg School of Medicine. Baxter makes the cell-sorting equipment used to isolate the cells from the blood.
Pending Food and Drug Administration approval, UF researchers, through the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute-funded Cardiovascular Cell Therapy Research Network, are gearing up to launch three other multicenter studies within the next several months that use other types of a patient's own stem cells.
One trial focuses on patients who have had a heart attack within a week preceding study enrollment, another focuses on patients whose heart attack occurred within the preceding two to three weeks, and the third focuses on patients with congestive heart failure or chronic chest pain that has not responded to traditional treatment.
These studies will use stem cells taken directly from the patients' bone marrow instead of stem cells isolated from the bloodstream, Pepine said, and will test whether various cell therapies can improve the heart's plumbing by helping to repair blood vessels or form new ones and strengthen the heart muscle to improve its ability to pump efficiently.
Douglas E. Vaughan, M.D., chief of the division of cardiovascular medicine at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, said the study is important and targets a challenging group of patients who need new options.
"There's a lot of enthusiasm in the cardiovascular community about the potential of cell-based therapies for the treatment of cardiovascular diseases," Vaughan said, "and there is increasing experience around the world in using bone marrow-derived stem cells in patients with cardiovascular disease. There is growing confidence this is going to be a safe form of therapy, but there are continuing questions about how effective it will be and what its impact will be in individual patients."
University of Florida
Related Stem Cells Articles:
Researchers have identified a protein that must be present in order for mammary stem cells to perform their normal functions.
Researchers at Boston Children's Hospital have, for the first time, generated blood-forming stem cells in the lab using pluripotent stem cells, which can make virtually every cell type in the body.
Researchers have developed a new approach for growing and studying cells they hope one day will lead to curing lung diseases such as cystic fibrosis through 'personalized medicine.'
Generating mature and viable heart muscle cells from human or other animal stem cells has proven difficult for biologists.
DNA mutations in bone cells that support blood development can drive leukemia formation in nearby blood stem cells.
With age, the chromosomes of our cardiac stem cells compress as they move into a state of safe, semiretirement.
A team of researchers from the Medical University of South Carolina and elsewhere has found a better way to purify liver cells made from induced pluripotent stem cells.
International stem cell scientists, co-led in Canada by Dr. John Dick and in the Netherlands by Dr.
Signaling a potential new approach to treating diabetes, researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St.
In a new Cell Reports paper, a team led by John P.
Related Stem Cells Reading:
Stem Cell Therapy: A Rising Tide: How Stem Cells Are Disrupting Medicine and Transforming Lives
by Neil H Riordan (Author)
Stem cells are the repair cells of your body. When there aren’t enough of them, or they aren’t working properly, chronic diseases can manifest and persist. From industry leaders, sport stars, and Hollywood icons to thousands of everyday, ordinary people, stem cell therapy has helped when standard medicine failed. Many of them had lost hope. These are their stories.
Neil H Riordan, author of MSC: Clinical Evidence Leading Medicine’s Next Frontier, the definitive textbook on clinical stem cell therapy, brings you an easy-to-read book about how and why stem cells work,... View Details
Stem Cells: An Insider's Guide
by Paul Knoepfler (Author)
Stem Cells: An Insider's Guide is an exciting new book that takes readers inside the world of stem cells guided by international stem cell expert, Dr. Paul Knoepfler. Stem cells are catalyzing a revolution in medicine. The book also tackles the exciting and hotly debated area of stem cell treatments that are capturing the public's imagination. In the future they may also transform how we age and reproduce. However, there are serious risks and ethical challenges, too. The author's goal with this insider's guide is to give readers the information needed to distinguish between the... View Details
The Stem Cell Revolution
by Mark Berman MD (Author), Elliot Lander MD (Contributor)
The book describes the journey into the growing arena of clinical stem cell therapy by highlighting not only the road that brought a team of physicians together but also real stories from a number of their patients that were given their health back through the magic of stem cell therapy. Your fat is loaded with stem cells that can be used now to treat and reverse a large number of inflammatory and degenerative conditions. Most people have no idea that these magical cells actually exist right within our bodies. They think that they must wait until Big Pharma or a university PhD manufactures... View Details
Stem Cells Are Everywhere
by Irv Weissman MD (Author)
An engaging introduction to stem cells for young scientists
How do you heal when you cut your skin or break a bone? How does your body keep making new blood or brain cells, or even second teeth? How does a plant keep growing larger? The answers lie in stem cells, which are found in every growing plant and animal. Keeping the subject simple enough for young readers, a pioneer of stem cell research explains cells, tissues, normal growth, what can go wrong, and how to fix it. View Details
Stem Cells For Dummies
by Lawrence S.B. Goldstein (Author), Meg Schneider (Author)
The first authoritative yet accessible guide to this controversial topic
Stem Cell Research For Dummies offers a balanced, plain-English look at this politically charged topic, cutting away the hype and presenting the facts clearly for you, free from debate. It explains what stem cells are and what they do, the legalities of harvesting them and using them in research, the latest research findings from the U.S. and abroad, and the prospects for medical stem cell therapies in the short and long term.Explains the differences between adult stem cells and embryonic/umbilical... View Details
Stem Cells: A Very Short Introduction
by Jonathan Slack (Author)
Embryonic stem cells have been hot-button topics in recent years, generating intense public interest as well as much confusion and misinformation. In this Very Short Introduction, leading authority Jonathan Slack offers a clear and informative overview of stem cells--what they are, what scientists do with them, what stem cell therapies are available today, and how they might be used in the future. Slack explains the difference between embryonic stem cells, which exist only in laboratory cultures, and tissue-specific stem cells, which exist in our bodies, and he discusses how... View Details
Stem Cells: A Short Course
by Rob Burgess (Author)
Stem Cells: A Short Course is a comprehensive text for students delving into the rapidly evolving discipline of stem cell research. Comprised of eight chapters, the text addresses all of the major facets and disciplines related to stem cell biology and research. A brief history of stem cell research serves as an introduction, followed by coverage of stem cell fundamentals; chapters then explore embryonic and fetal amniotic stem cells, adult stem cells, nuclear reprogramming, and cancer stem cells. The book concludes with chapters on stem cell applications, including the role of stem... View Details
The Stem Cell Hope: How Stem Cell Medicine Can Change Our Lives
by Alice Park (Author)
A landmark book by the senior science writer at Time magazine introduces us to a medical breakthrough that can save our lives.
Few people know much about stem cell research beyond the ethical questions raised by using embryos. But in the last decade, stem cell research has made huge advances toward eliminating some of our most intractable diseases. Now this sweeping and accessible book introduces us to this cutting-edge science that will revolutionize medicine and change the way we think about and treat disease.
Alice Park takes us from stem cell's... View Details
Stem Cells: Promise and Reality
by Lygia V Pereira (Author)
Stem Cells: Promises and Reality will tell you everything you have always wanted to know about stem cells, but could not understand the field from elsewhere. Stem cells are the great therapeutic promise of the century, and this evolving field of research and medicine brings with it many legal, ethical and psychological issues that must be discussed by society as a whole. Written so as to be accessible to general readers as well as specialists, this book explains what stem cells are, and the different aspects of stem cell research and applications. The book will enable the reader to understand... View Details
Essentials of Stem Cell Biology, Third Edition
by Robert Lanza (Editor), Anthony Atala (Editor)
First developed as an accessible abridgement of the successful Handbook of Stem Cells, Essentials of Stem Cell Biology serves the needs of the evolving population of scientists, researchers, practitioners, and students embracing the latest advances in stem cells. Representing the combined effort of 7 editors and more than 200 scholars and scientists whose pioneering work has defined our understanding of stem cells, this book combines the prerequisites for a general understanding of adult and embryonic stem cells with a presentation by the world's experts of the latest... View Details