Baby With Heart Defect ‘Probably Saved’ by Experimental Stem Cell Injection

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Doctors in the UK say they have developed a stem cell-based patch that should more effectively repair heart defects in babies. An earlier experimental treatment appears to have saved one infant’s life.and the team plans to Clinical trials of the technology begin soon.

Two years ago, doctors at Bristol Heart Institute were given special permission to inject stem cells directly into a baby’s failing heart. The baby, identified as Finley, had a heart defect in which the two main arteries that supply blood to the lungs and body were in the wrong position. The artery replacement surgery was successful, but Finley suffered serious complications afterward. Put him in intensive care and on a ventilator. After several failed treatments, Finley was scheduled to undergo another surgery. But doctors have theorized that additional stem cell injections These cells, which can grow into other types of cells, may increase his chances of survival by regenerating damaged heart tissue.

Finley’s “may save lives” treatment, said Massimo Caputo, chief surgeon and professor at Bristol. tell BBCEventually, Finley was taken off his ventilator and other drugs. Six months old was able to go home for the first time.

Caputo and his team improved the treatment applied to Finley. The stem cells are now placed on scaffolding to be sewn onto the defective part of the heart. There is a similar patch commonly used to repair heart defects in children. but made with completely non-biological materials. This drawback increases the risk that the immune system will attack the material. This can cause a scar on the heart around it. or eventually destroy that material These patches cannot grow over time. This means that children will need multiple surgeries to be reattached as they grow. Hopefully the team’s patch will not only increase the heart’s ability to repair itself. but grows with the child’s developing body. reduce or eliminate the need for repetitive actions

“For years, families have come to us asking why their child had so many heart surgeries. Although each operation is life-saving. But such experiences can be incredibly stressful for children and parents alike. We believe that our stem cell plates will be the answer to these problems,” Caputo said in a statement. dissemination by the institute.

Caputo and his team have received funding from the British Heart Foundation to develop additional patches.If everything goes according to plan They expect to begin clinical trials within the next two years. As for Finley, it looks like he’ll be successful two years later.

“We can’t thank Massimo enough. I believe if it wasn’t for the stem cell treatment, Finley wouldn’t be with us today. Finley is very playful and funny. He was a real warrior at heart and I tell him that all the time,” his mother Melissa Hudd said in a statement.

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