Women with heart disease are more likely to give birth to female rather than male babies according to a new study recently presented at the World Congress of Cardiology. The study found that three-quarters of the 216 children born to 200 pregnant women with diagnosed heart disease were female.
Continue reading Women With Heart Disease More Likely to Have Baby Girls
The origins of congenital heart defects could be traced right back to the first stages of embryonic development — according to University of East Anglia (UEA) research.
Continue reading Congenital Heart Defects Could Have Their Origin During Very Early Pregnancy
Researchers at the Sainte-Justine University Hospital Center and University of Montreal have identified genetic origins in 10% of an important form of congenital heart diseases by studying the genetic variability within families. “This is more than the sum of the genes found to date in all previous studies, which explained only 1% of the disease, says Dr. Marc-Phillip Hitz, lead author of the study published in PLoS Genetics, under the direction of Dr. Gregor Andelfinger, pediatric cardiologist and principal investigator leading an international research team, who calls this study “a very important step towards a molecular catalog, which ultimately may explain the evolution of disease in individual patients and allow to influence the progression of the disease.”
Continue reading Major Genetic Discovery Explains 10 Percent of Aortic Valve Disease
Transcription factor Ajuba regulates stem cell activity in the heart during embryonic development. It is not unusual for babies to be born with congenital heart defects. This is because the development of the heart in the embryo is a process which is not only extremely complex, but also error-prone. Scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Heart and Lung Research in Bad Nauheim have now identified a key molecule that plays a central role in regulating the function of stem cells in the heart. As a result, not only could congenital heart defects be avoided in future, but new ways of stimulating the regeneration of damaged hearts in adults may be opened up.
Continue reading Finished Heart Switches Stem Cells Off
Damaged heart tissue is not known for having much inherent capacity for repair. But now, scientists are closing in on signals that may be able to coax the heart into producing replacement cardiac muscle cells. Using a zebrafish model system, researchers have identified a family of molecules that can stimulate stem cells to develop into beating heart muscle cells. The research, published by Cell Press in the December 21st issue of the journal Chemistry & Biology, may pave the way towards new therapeutic approaches for cardiac regeneration and repair.
Continue reading How Do You Mend a Broken Heart? Coaxing the Heart Into Making Replacement Cardiac Muscle Cells
Researchers at Boston Children’s Hospital have found, for the first time that young humans (infants, children and adolescents) are capable of generating new heart muscle cells. These findings refute the long-held belief that the human heart grows after birth exclusively by enlargement of existing cells, and raise the possibility that scientists could stimulate production of new cells to repair injured hearts.
Continue reading Human Hearts Generate New Cells After Birth; Findings Could Lead to Novel Approaches for Treating Heart Failure in Children