Stem cells restore function in primate heart-failure study
Researchers at UW Medicine in Seattle have successfully used human stem cells to restore heart function in monkeys with heart failure. The findings suggest that the technique will be effective in patients with heart failure, the leading cause of death in the world.
“The cells form new muscle that integrates into heart so that it pumps vigorously again,” said Dr. Charles “Chuck” Murry, professor of pathology at the University of Washington School of Medicine. He is also a professor of medicine in the Division of Cardiology, and of bioengineering. He is the director of the UW Medicine Institute for Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine and was the senior leader of this research project.
“In some animals” Murry said, the cells returned the hearts’ functioning to better than 90 percent of normal.“ Murry and his colleagues report their findings in the July 2 issue of the journal Nature Biotechnology. The paper’s lead authors are Drs. Yen-Wen Liu, Billy Chen and Xiulan Yang.