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Gene Therapy

Gene Therapy Helps Angina Sufferers

20 years, 4 months ago

8410  0
Posted on Dec 07, 2003, 2 a.m. By Bill Freeman

Gene therapy improves the blood flow to the heart of people suffering from angina, say researchers. Dr Cindy L Grines and colleagues used gene therapy to administer a gene coding for fibroblast growth factor (Ad5FGF-4), which promotes the growth of secondary or "collateral" blood vessels, into the coronary arteries of 35 angina sufferers.

Gene therapy improves the blood flow to the heart of people suffering from angina, say researchers. Dr Cindy L Grines and colleagues used gene therapy to administer a gene coding for fibroblast growth factor (Ad5FGF-4), which promotes the growth of secondary or "collateral" blood vessels, into the coronary arteries of 35 angina sufferers. A further 17 patients were treated with a placebo. Results obtained at the end of the study, eight weeks later, showed that the area of poor perfusion (blood flow) in the heart was reduced by 4.2% in those who received the gene therapy. Meanwhile in the placebo group, perfusion improved by just 1.6%. Perhaps more importantly, an increase in the area of impaired perfusion was seen in just 6% of the gene therapy group, compared with 35% of the placebo group. In addition, those treated with gene therapy tended to see a greater improvement in angina symptoms than those in the control group did. So much so that just eight weeks after treatment 43% of treated patients compared with 17% of placebo patients no longer needed to take nitroglycerin, a drug commonly used to treat the disease.

SOURCE/REFERENCE: Journal of the American College of Cardiology 2003;42:1339-1347.

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