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Activation and Rejuvenation of Endogenous Cardiac Stem Cells

Years funded:

Heart failure rates are increasing exponentially in Australia and worldwide.

One in two people diagnosed with severe heart failure will die within one year of diagnosis. This burden of heart failure is underpinned by the hearts limited capacity for self-repair after injury. This limitation could be overcome by stimulating newly discovered stem cell populations residing within the adult heart itself.

Dr Chong and his colleagues recently discovered a cardiac colony forming stem cell population and have found that the molecule Platelet Derived Growth Factor (PDGF) activates and rejuvenates resident heart stem cells. In the second phase of this work, novel combination therapies will be trialled to enhance the stem cell activating potential of PDGF. Outcomes of this project include expedited progression of this promising therapy, from the laboratory into the clinic where thousands of heart failure patients could one-day benefit.

Researcher Profile

Dr Sujitha Thavapalachandran

Institute: University of Sydney
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