Overcoming the Barriers to Stem Cell Therapy

Mohammad Amin Aminzadeh, M.D.; Anthony J White, M.B.B.S., Ph.D.; Satoshi Matsushita, MD, PhD; Raj R. Makkar, M.D., F.A.C.C.; James S. Forrester, M.D., F.A.C.C.



In This Article



Intracoronary infusion of bone marrow derived stem cells following acute myocardial infarction induces an absolute increase in ejection fraction of around 4%[1] and may decrease mortality at 5 years.[2] Although the therapy seems to be safe and modestly efficacious, recent evidence suggests that few injected cells survive, or persist at the delivery site, or subsequently proliferate (Figure 1). Thus even if stem cells have an intrinsic capacity to create new tissue, they are unlikely to do so if the recipient environment is not conducive to regeneration. In this manuscript, we describe new approaches to enhancing the survival, persistence and proliferation of both injected and resident cells in the affected myocardium.

Figure 1.

Cell Survival.