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Eur Heart J. 2009 Mar;30(6):662-70. doi: 10.1093/eurheartj/ehn532. Epub 2008 Dec 23.

Improved regional function after autologous bone marrow-derived stem cell transfer in patients with acute myocardial infarction: a randomized, double-blind strain rate imaging study.

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Department of Cardiology, Gasthuisberg University Hospital, University of Leuven, 49 Herestraat, B-3000 Leuven, Belgium.



To investigate whether intracoronary transfer of bone marrow progenitor cells (BMPCs) early after reperfusion of an acute myocardial infarction improves regional myocardial function in a randomized double-blind, placebo-controlled strain rate imaging study.


Regional myocardial deformation was measured using velocity-derived strain rate imaging in 67 STEMI patients randomized 1:1 to intracoronary infusion of BMPC (n = 33) or placebo (n = 34). Myocardial segments were grouped into infarct (n = 232), border (n = 250), and remote (n = 526) based on MRI-delayed enhancement and the perfusion territory of the infarct-related vessel. Four months after revascularization and progenitor cell/placebo transfer, regional myocardial deformation (rate) improved significantly more in the infarct segments of BMPC patients (treatment effect on end-systolic strain: -3.7 +/- 1.0%, P = 0.0003; peak-systolic strain rate: -0.20 +/- 0.07 s(-1), P = 0.0035). These findings were confirmed by a significantly greater improvement of longitudinal mitral valve ring displacement in the infarct walls of BMPC patients (treatment effect: 0.93 mm, P = 0.034).


Intracoronary infusion of BMPC early after reperfusion of a STEMI improves recuperation of regional myocardial function at 4 months' follow-up. Quantitative assessment of regional systolic function might be more sensitive than global LV ejection fraction for the evaluation of BMPC therapy after STEMI.

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