, Volume 4, Issue 5, pp 603-604
Date: 11 Aug 2011

A Clinical Commentary on the Articles “Strategies for Tissue Engineering Cardiac Constructs to Affect Functional Repair Following Myocardial Infarction” and “Stem Cell-Based Cardiac Tissue Engineering”

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Heart failure is a major cause of global morbidity and mortality. Over 24 million individuals worldwide have been diagnosed with heart failure with the number of affected individuals projected to approach 20 million by the year 2020 in the USA alone [13]. Historically, therapies for heart failure have focused on modulating hemodynamic loading conditions to ameliorate symptoms with salutary effects on cardiac remodeling that improve survival. Surgical advances have also led to improved outcomes after cardiac transplantation; however, the limited number of donor hearts available has driven future therapies into two arenas: biomechanical and biomolecular. The promise of mechanical support devices (MSDs) for end-stage heart failure is being realized; however, this option remains costly and invasive while demonstrating only a limited long-term survival benefit [4]. Furthermore, the long-term impact of device-based ventriculo-vascular coupling remains poorly understood as these devices have

This article is a commentary on the following articles: 10.1007/s12265-011-9303-1 and 10.1007/s12265-011-9307-x