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BHF - Promising new drug could help thousands of heart attack survivors

Scientists have developed a new drug that could help reduce tissue damage after a heart attack, stroke, or major surgery.

The research, in mice, showed that the compound, called MitoSNO, protects heart tissue from injury which occurs when blood flow is restored suddenly after a prolonged period without oxygen.

This could mean fewer heart attack survivors go on to live with the burden of heart failure

BHF's Research Advisor, Shannon Amoils, said: “When people have a heart attack, the heart is damaged because it’s starved of blood and oxygen. But, ironically, heart muscle is also harmed when blood flow to the heart is later restored – this is known as reperfusion injury

“This is an important study, because currently there is no effective treatment for reperfusion injury, which can contribute to heart failure after a heart attack.

“This drug is promising as it could potentially treat people immediately after a heart attack when blood flow to the heart is restored as part of routine treatment. This could mean fewer heart attack survivors go on to live with the burden of heart failure, which for many is a debilitating and distressing condition.”

The research was published in Nature Medicine.

In severe cases, heart failure can leave you disabled and gasping for breath. We're carrying out our most ambitious research programme ever, in order to understand how to repair the damage caused by a heart attack. There is hope for a cure with your help.

 


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