Posted on Sep 17, 2019, 3 p.m.
Heart attack is a leading cause of death, and lasting damage is common following an event. A recent preclinical study suggests that acute therapy with vitamin E may be of benefit in patients presenting with heart attack, and it may offer an effective low cost treatment.
"One of the most effective anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory agents is vitamin E and its derivatives," said Professor Karlheinz Peter, the Baker Institute's Deputy Director, Basic and Translational Science and lead author of the study. "Our treatment regime reflects clinical conditions, where patients could receive their first application of vitamin E in the ambulance or upon their arrival in the emergency department, before reopening and stenting the blocked vessel and the following days in hospital before discharge."
“We plan to prove that heart function is preserved using sensitive magnetic resonance imaging. Thereby, we hope to establish an inexpensive and effective therapy for patients with heart attack." says Professor Peter.
Vitamin E therapy has been unsuccessful in the past during trials for preventing heart attacks, but it has not been investigated for treating heart attacks. As published in Redox Biology Professor Peters next plans to test an approved formulation of vitamin E in patients that have been admitted with a heart attack.
"As there is currently no drug available that can reduce the cardiac damage caused by an overshooting inflammation after reopening of a blocked coronary artery, the potential impact of our findings on cardiovascular health would be significant," said Dr Maria Wallert, a nutritional scientist and vitamin specialist from Jena University in Germany.
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