Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome Treatment Integrates Cardiac Stem Cells.

Initial trials of stem cell treatment for hypoplastic left heart syndrome have proven to be both safe and effective for children with the congenital defect.

Researchers from Okayama University have developed a method to treat the congenital heart defect known as hypoplastic left heart syndrome [HLHS] by utilizing a specialized cardiac stem cell.  In a Phase I clinical trial conducted on children suffering from HLHS, the scientists concluded that, because the young stem cells in children are more abundant and self-renewing than those in adults, intracoronary injection of stem cells is a safe and feasible approach to treating the condition. Continue reading

Pulmonary Valve for Children Engineered from Stem Cells.

An organic pulmonary valve replacement for children has been engineered with stem cells to grow as the child does to prevent multiple surgeries.

Researchers at the University Of Maryland School Of Medicine have created a pulmonary valve replacement for pediatric patients suffering from congenital heart conditions.  The scientists, led by Dr. David L. Simpson, differentiated the patient’s own [autologous] stem cells into heart valvular cells and then arranged these cells to bioengineer a pulmonary valve that was unique to each patient.  The valve was created in vitro [outside the body] so the next step would be to develop protocols to undertake clinical trials.   Continue reading

First U.S. Stem Cell Clinical Trial for Pediatric Congenital Heart Disease

Baby with Pediatric Congenital Heart Disease
Pediatric Congenital Heart Disease patient

The Mayo Clinic recently announced the first stem cell based clinical trial for treating pediatric congenital heart disease in the US.  The stem cell therapy seeks to treat hypoplastic left heart syndrome (HLHS), a rare defect in which the left side of the heart is critically underdeveloped.  The treatment utilizes patient’s own [autologous] stem cells taken from the child’s umbilical cord blood.

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