February is American Heart Month, a time to highlight innovative research that seeks to advance cellular therapy as a new option for restoring heart health. One of the latest discoveries in the Center for Regenerative Medicine and Mayo Clinic Van Cleve Cardiac Regenerative Medicine Program established a way to engineer stem cells that activate regenerative mechanisms for healing. This research uses a genetic material called messenger RNA to readily manufacture cardiac repair competent stem cells.
This research was conducted by Mark Li, an M.D./Ph.D. student in Mayo Clinic Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences and Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine, with the support of a collaborative team. Li’s doctoral thesis builds on two decades of research in the cardiac regeneration laboratories of Atta Behfar, M.D., Ph.D., and Andre Terzic, M.D., Ph.D. The results of Li’s thesis are published in Stem Cells Translational Medicine.
“The safety and efficacy of stem cell therapy have been documented in advanced clinical trials, but the method of cell manufacturing had remained cost-prohibitive, limiting large-scale adoption in clinical practice,” says Li. “My thesis developed an alternative method to engineer stem cells with high regenerative potential aimed at offering affordable and accessible solutions for patient care.”
Read the rest of the article on the Center for Regenerative Medicine blog.
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