Heart Attack Damage Slashed With Microparticle Therapy

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    Jan 19, 2014 2:38 AM GMT
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140115143703.htm

    When biodegradable microparticles were injected after a heart attack, the size of the heart lesion was reduced by 50 percent and the heart could pump significantly more blood. . . . The micoparticles work by binding to the damaging cells — inflammatory monocytes — and diverting them to a fatal detour. Instead of racing to the heart, the cells head to the spleen and die. The particles are made of poly (lactic-co-glycolic) acid, a biocompatible and biodegradable substance already approved by the Food and Drug Administration for use in re-absorbable sutures. A microparticle is 500 nanometers, which is 1/200th size of a hair.
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    Jan 19, 2014 5:21 AM GMT
    MuchMoreThanMuscle saidDang!

    Cool story, bro.


    There seem to have been a number of great advances for treating heart attacks/disease announced lately... which is great news.
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    Jan 19, 2014 11:59 AM GMT
    Except... the US FDA won't be looking at this for years, according to the article. And then it takes years more before the underfunded FDA will make a decision to approve this treatment.

    So that even if this turns out to be a breakthrough lifesaving technique, US citizens may not benefit from it for the better part of a decade.

    And so while I want our pharmaceuticals to be safe, the snails pace at which things in the US move kills people.The FDA should be renamed the "Federal Delaying Administration" instead of the "Federal Drug Administration".
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    Jan 22, 2014 1:25 AM GMT
    More:

    http://www.technologyreview.com/news/523546/hacking-the-immune-system-to-prevent-damage-after-a-heart-attack/

    Using tiny biodegradable particles to disrupt the body’s normal immune response after a heart attack could help save patients from tissue damage and certain long-term health problems that often follow. Researchers have shown that injecting such particles into mice within 24 hours of a heart attack not only significantly reduces tissue damage, but also results in those mice having stronger cardiac function 30 days later. The inventors of the new technology now plan to pursue human trials.

    Much of the tissue damage that results from a heart attack is the result of inflammation, the body’s natural response to harmful stimuli such as damaged muscle. But in the case of a heart attack, these immune cells do more harm than good, explains Daniel Getts, inventor of the new therapy and chief scientific officer of Cour Pharmaceutical Development. The system’s weaponry is “fairly generic,” he says. While the toxic compounds that the immune cells secrete can be beneficial in defending the body against an infection, they also cause tissue damage. This phenomenon occurs not only after heart attacks, but also in a range of other diseases, including West Nile Virus, inflammatory bowel disease, and multiple sclerosis.