Biomaterials to Limit Post-Infarction Remodeling PDF Print E-mail


The ultimate goal of this project is to develop an acellular material that can be percutaneously delivered into an acute myocardial infarction (MI) that will prevent the development of heart dilatation and associated chronic heart failure that occurs in many patients after heart attacks. The best currently available treatment for patients suffering an acute MI (> 1.2 million patients in US annually) is re-perfusion therapy.
This involves expeditious coronary arteriography, angioplasty and coronary artery stenting. When performed within 2-4 hours of the onset of symptoms reperfusion therapy, salvages heart muscle, improves survival and limits adverse post MI left ventricular (LV) dilatation which reduces the risk that heart failure will develop in the future. Unfortunately, successful reperfusion therapy is only achieved in about 50% of acute MI patients; as a result MI remains the largest cause of heart failure in Western Society. This pathologic process is initiated by infarct thinning and stretching which act to increase mechanical stress in all parts of the heart (even areas outside the infarct). Our therapy would involve the delivery of a hydrogel material directly to the infarct area using catheter technology within the first week after MI.  
The therapy would limit infarct stretching and thinning; thereby, reducing LV wall stresses and preventing dilatation of the ventricle and the development of heart failure.  This therapy would be used in patients who either did not receive reperfusion therapy (i.e. angioplasty) or patients who had ineffective reperfusion therapy.

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Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.