Medical Scientists at Duke University have discovered a way to make the path to a post-heart attack recovery a little easier. Through experiments the team behind the project discovered a method that converts scar tissue that is formed after a cardiac arrest into healthy muscle tissue. If proven successful on a larger scale since it has been proven in only a living mouse so far, this would make a stem cell transplant unnecessary.
The experiment through which the possible application was developed was when researches introduced microRNA to scar tissue cells to mouse and the hardened cells which are called fibroblasts are developed after a heart attack and will affect the organ’s ability to pump blood effectively. The microRNAs are molecules that govern the activity of several genes and can transform fibroblasts among many others into cells that look like heart muscles which are otherwise called cardiomyocytes.
The results from the study were published in a medical journal called Circulation Research and with such limited information and the potential for expansion, the experiments at this initial phase will find itself paving a way for the millions of US citizens that suffer from heart disease which is the leading cause of death in the country.
According to the report, with the microRNA and its adaptive abilities, it can theoretically even be used to regenerate tissue in the brain, kidneys and other organs. With these experiments gifting positive outcomes when tested on mice, the team of researchers has plans to implement the cell reversal technology on larger animals and if that proves to be successful as well, it will find its way to human test subjects and hopefully a practical application over time.