Stem Cell Therapy to Treat Heart Ischaemia: Implications for Diabetes Cardiovascular Complications


Diabetes mellitus is a well-known risk factor for coronary artery disease (CAD), which can lead to acute myocardial infarction, chronic myocardial ischaemia and heart failure. Despite the advantages in medical treatment, percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) and coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG), morbidity and mortality is still high in patients with CAD. Along with PCI and CABG or in patients without options for revascularization, stem cell regenerative therapy in controlled trials is a possibility. Stem cells are believed to exert their actions by angiogenesis and regeneration of cardiomyocytes. Recently published clinical trials and meta-analysis of stem cell studies have shown encouraging results with increased left ventricle ejection fraction and reduced symptoms in patients with CAD and heart failure. There is some evidence of mesenchymal stem cell being more effective compared to other cell types and cell therapy may be more effective in patients with known diabetes mellitus. However, further investigations are warranted.

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Abbas A. Qayyum, Anders B. Mathiasen and Jens Kastrup declare that they have no conflict of interest.

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This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.

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Correspondence to Abbas Ali Qayyum.

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This article is part of the Topical Collection on Transplantation

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Qayyum, A.A., Mathiasen, A.B. & Kastrup, J. Stem Cell Therapy to Treat Heart Ischaemia: Implications for Diabetes Cardiovascular Complications. Curr Diab Rep 14, 554 (2014).

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  • Cardiovascular complications
  • Coronary artery disease
  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Mesenchymal stem cell
  • Myocardial ischaemia
  • Stem cells