e-book Stem Cell and Gene Therapy for Cardiovascular Disease

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Heart problems have touched many of our lives, or the lives of those we care about. Heart attacks and heart failure are leading killers in the U. Typically, a heart attack is followed by significant heart muscle cell death, leaving the organ in a weakened state and the patient at risk of cardiovascular dysfunction and eventual heart failure.

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This leads to many of the deaths attributed to cardiovascular disease. Over the past 20 years, hope has grown around the use of stem cells to enhance regeneration following a heart attack, wherein stem cells would facilitate tissue repair and help restore heart muscle function. This notion has captured the hope of many scientists and physicians, evidenced by the emergence of several companies e. However, the legitimacy of cardiac stem cell research is now being called into question. Allegations against one of the leading scientists in this field, Dr.


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These events will undoubtedly impact the field of cardiac stem cells. Those involved will need to find a way to overcome damaged perceptions and regain the trust of funders, investors, the academic community, and, most importantly, patients. Although the events leading to this situation are unique, three important lessons can be taken from this cautionary tale and applied across the field of stem cell research, from academia to biotech and pharma:.

Despite this, cardiac stem cell research accelerated quickly toward clinical trials, as scientists were understandably keen to get this potential new therapy to patients.


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  7. However, this rush to commercialize has unfortunately meant clinical trials are now underway when much of the underlying biology is still not well understood. This will most likely impact the perceptions of cardiac stem cell research and trials, therefore affecting funding and investment. Instead, researchers and life sciences firms in the area of stem cell research should allow a strong evidence base to grow in order to be confident in the scientific basis before testing therapeutic benefit in humans.

    Heart Disease – A Closer Look at Stem Cells

    These journals must reassess their processes to uncover why so many papers were published with fabricated data. However, this also shows the need for those who read and use published information to critically review and evaluate findings, even if they are presented in highly esteemed journals.


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    8. Investors and companies involved in stem cells therefore need to ensure they do their due diligence when entering a therapeutic or disease area and to take conflicting results seriously, as was not done in the case of cardiac stem cells. A key lesson from this series of events is the need to emphasize the importance of replicating and reproducing scientific findings, rather than just focusing on novel research. Skip to search form Skip to main content. These somewhat disappointing results should emphasize the need for translational research, with bidirectional feedback between the basic research laboratory and the clinical arena.

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