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Cell Transplant. 2007;16(9):907-17.

Human cord blood cells and myocardial infarction: effect of dose and route of administration on infarct size.

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Department of Medicine of the James A. Haley VA Hospital, University of South Florida College of Medicine, Tampa, FL, USA.


There is no consensus regarding the optimal dose of stem cells or the optimal route of administration for the treatment of acute myocardial infarction. Bone marrow cells, containing hematopoietic and mesenchymal stem cells, in doses of 0.5 x 10(6) to >30 x 10(6) have been directly injected into the myocardium or into coronary arteries or infused intravenously in subjects with myocardial infarctions to reduce infarct size and improve heart function. Therefore, we determined the specific effects of different doses of human umbilical cord blood mononuclear cells (HUCBC), which contain hematopoietic and mesenchymal stem cells, on infarct size. In order to determine the optimal technique for stem cell administration, HUCBC were injected directly into the myocardium (IM), or into the LV cavity with the ascending aorta transiently clamped to facilitate coronary artery perfusion (IA), or injected intravenously (IV) in rats 1-2 h after the left anterior coronary artery was permanently ligated. Immune suppressive therapy was not given to any rat. One month later, the infarct size in control rat hearts treated with only Isolyte averaged 23.7 +/- 1.7% of the LV muscle area. Intramyocardial injection of HUCBC reduced the infarct size by 71% with 0.5 x 10(6) HUCBC and by 93% with 4 x 10(6) HUCBC in comparison with the controls (p < 0.001). Intracoronary injection reduced the infarction size by 47% with 0.5 x 10(6) HUCBC and by 80% with 4 x 10(6) HUCBC (p < 0.001), and IV HUCBC reduced infarct size by 51% with 0.5 x 10(6) and by 75-77% with 16-32 million HUCBC (p < 0.001) in comparison with control hearts. With 4 x 10(6) HUCBC, infarction size was 65% smaller with IM HUCBC than with IA HUCBC and 78% smaller than with IV HUCBC (p < 0.05). Nevertheless, IM, IA, and IV HUCBC all produced significant reductions in infarct size in comparison with Isolyte-treated infarcted hearts without requirements for host immune suppression. The present experiments demonstrate that the optimal dose of HUCBC for reduction of infarct size in the rat is 4 x 10(6) IM, 4 x 10(6) IA, and 16 x 10(6) IV, and that the IM injection of HUCBC is the most effective technique for reduction in infarct size.

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