What is the role of myoblast transplantation in the treatment of dilated cardiomyopathy?

Updated: Mar 02, 2021
  • Author: Vinh Q Nguyen, MD, FACC; Chief Editor: Gyanendra K Sharma, MD, FACC, FASE  more...
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Myoblast transplantation involves the injection of skeletal myoblasts as an autograft into damaged myocardium (scar).

In the Poznan (phase I) trial in Poznan, Poland, which studied 10 patients with postinfarction heart failure without viable myocardium but who had adequate coronary flow from revascularization or collateral vessels and underwent skeletal myoblast transplant injection through catheterization of cardiac veins via intravascular ultrasonographic guidance, 9 patients showed improvement in New York Heart Association (NYHA) symptoms from class II-III to class I. [144] Segmental contractility was not statistically evaluated owing to the small number of patients.

The Myoblast Autologous Grafting in Ischemic Cardiomyopathy (MAGIC) trial was the first randomized placebo-controlled trial that studied myoblast transplantation in patients with left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) below 35% as well as with myocardial infarction and indication for coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery. [145] At 6-month follow-up, autologous skeletal myoblast transplantation (low and high doses) via intraoperative injection in and around myocardial scars did not improve regional or global LV function compared to the control group, although the high-dose cell transplant group had a significant decrease in LV volumes. There was also a higher rate of postoperative arrhythmic events in myoblast-treated patients, but there were no differences in 6-month rates of major adverse cardiac events and ventricular arrhythmias. [145]

In a study evaluating autologous skeletal myoblast transplantation in patients undergoing CABG or left ventricular assist device (LVAD) implantation, follow-up positron-emission tomography (PET) scans showed glucose uptake within infarcted scars (ie, new areas of viability). [146] LVEF also increased from 28% to 36% after 2 years. Moreover, the explanted hearts showed survival of the transplanted fibroblasts. [146]

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