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ENGLEMED HEALTH NEWS

Muscle patch plan for damaged hearts

Tuesday June 4th, 2019

British scientists have developed muscle "patches" that could be sewn onto the damaged hearts of patients who have suffered cardiac damage, a conference is to be told today.

The six centimetres square patches have been successfully grown in laboratory conditions from stem cells and contain up to 50 million cells, researchers at Imperial College, London, report.

The patches have already been tested successfully on laboratory rabbits and shown to improve the function of the heart.

The research is to be reported to the British Cardiovascular Society conference in Manchester, UK. The developers worked on the idea after simple injections of stem cells into damaged hearts proved disappointing.

Scientists found that patches implanted without provoking abnormal heart rhythms and successfully gained nourishment from the blood supply of the recipient organ.

Researcher Dr Richard Jabbour said: “One day, we hope to add heart patches to the treatments that doctors can routinely offer people after a heart attack.

"We could prescribe one of these patches alongside medicines for someone with heart failure, which you could take from a shelf and implant straight into a person.”

Professor Metin Avkiran, associate medical director of the British Heart Foundation, said: "If clinical trials can show the benefits of these heart patches in people after a heart attack, it would be a great leap forward for regenerative medicine."

Tags: Heart Health | UK News

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