VEGF gene achieves angiogenesis

Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor restores blood flow to areas of cardiac tissue previously hibernating.

(medwire@sciencenow.com)
Aug 29, 2000

LONDON, August 29 (SPIS MedWire). Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) has been used to increase blood flow to the damaged hearts of patients. The VEGF gene is injected into areas of dead or unresponsive heart muscle, where it is then able to stimulate angiogenesis. Scientists at Tufts University School of Medicine, Boston, injected the hearts of thirteen patients — eight men and five women. They had all experienced severe angina, had at least one heart attack, and had undergone bypass surgery. The patients were evaluated using NOGA left ventricular electromechanical mapping and single photon emission CT-sestambi imaging, before the gene therapy. After sixty days the tests were carried out again and revealed improved blood flow to the heart. Four of the patients had partial restoration of blood flow to areas of muscle that were assumed to be dead scar tissue, in five of the patients this restoration was...

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