ROCHESTER, Minn. — Dec. 16, 2013 — Mayo Clinic researchers and colleagues in Belgium have developed a specialized catheter for transplanting stem cells into the beating heart. The novel device includes a curved needle and graded openings along the needle shaft, allowing for increased distribution of cells. The result is maximized retention of stem cells to repair the heart. The findings appear in the journal Circulation: Cardiovascular Interventions.
“Although biotherapies are increasingly more sophisticated, the tools for delivering regenerative therapies demonstrate a limited capacity in achieving high cell retention in the heart,” says Atta Behfar, M.D., Ph.D., a Mayo Clinic cardiology specialist and lead author of the study. “Retention of cells is, of course, crucial to an effective, practical therapy.”