DAVID GRANOVSKY

The Cardiomyopathy Association | Dogs with cardiomyopathy in stem cell study

In STEM CELLS IN THE NEWS on July 15, 2010 at 10:09 am

Dogs with cardiomyopathy in stem cell study

Doberman pinschers with dilated cardiomyopathy are to undergo stem cell treatment in America

Doberman pinschers with early stage dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) are to undergo stem cell treatment to help improve their hearts.

Up to 15 dogs are to be treated at the University of Florida’s Veterinary Medical Centre with $72,000 in support from the Doberman Pinscher Club of America.

The chief of the centre’s cardiology service, Amara Estrada, said “Dobermans have the highest prevalence of dilated cardiomyopathy of any breed of dog and also the most devastating course. So this was the most important and emergent group to focus on.”

It is then hoped the research team can pursue larger-scale clinical trials for Dobermans with DCM.

Research has already suggested that stem-cell transplants can help left ventricular pump function in both animals and humans who have had heart attacks.

All the dogs in the study will be anaesthetised and researchers will inject cells via a catheter into the heart. There will be follow-up checks at one month, six months, 12 months and 18 months.

If the new technique is effective, it may result in less expensive treatment compared to open heart surgery, said Dr Estrada.

Down the road, researchers may expand the studies to include other dog breeds in the hope of achieving beneficial results for all dogs.

The procedure ultimately could be available to veterinary specialists some day, she added.

Cardiomyopathy is common in many breeds of dog.

via The Cardiomyopathy Association | Dogs with cardiomyopathy in stem cell study.

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