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Curr Cardiol Rep. 2012 Aug;14(4):392-6. doi: 10.1007/s11886-012-0282-x.

Can bridge to recovery help to reveal the secrets of the failing heart?

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Harefield Heart Science Centre, National Heart and Lung Institute, Imperial College London, Harefield Hospital, London, UK.


Despite several decades of research and clinical experience, the basic mechanisms of the failing heart remain largely a secret. While pharmacological therapy can induce limited reverse remodeling, left ventricular assist device (LVAD) therapy offers the opportunity to induce significant improvements to the structure and function of the heart, with major clinical implications. LVAD therapy also provides significant insight into which changes have an impact on function and which do not, and could therefore reveal some of the secrets of the failing heart. In addition, LVAD-induced mechanical unloading may unlock further myocardial properties hitherto unknown such as the proliferation of the stem cell compartment. It may also serve as an important platform for emerging therapies such as gene and cell therapies. In this review, we highlight the most recent novel discoveries related to LVAD therapy and bridge to recovery (BTR). Discovering the integrated network of events that underlies BTR could unravel the secrets of the failing heart.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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