This book provides an update of recent advances in the basic and clinical applications of cell-based therapies for myocardial repair and regeneration in ischemic heart disease (IHD) and heart failure (HF). The first sections of the book illuminate basic aspects of stem cells such as definitions, isolation criteria and characterization of embryonic and adult stem cells, as well as pluripotent stem cells and tissue specific progenitor and stem cells. In the following section, the text examines the role of critical regulators of stem cell differentiation in myocardial regeneration, that include circadian rhythyms, microRNAs, epigenetics, microvescicles, and exosomes. The text concludes with a review of the use of stem/progenitor cells in cardiac regeneration and discuss current controversies, unresolved issues, challenges, and future directions. Stem Cells and Cardiac Regeneration is addressed to a wide audience consisting of cardiologists, clinicians, and research scientists, who will learn new concepts in cardiovascular regeneration and repair with special focus on molecular mechanisms and therapeutic potential for cardiovascular regeneration.
The potential use of stem cells in transplantation for the purpose of tissue regeneration is an exciting area of research currently undergoing rapid development. Implantation of human embryonic or autologous, ex vivo-expanded adult stem cells, particularly in older individuals, could circumvent the limited availability of organs/tissues as well as prevent complications related to immune rejection and disease transmission. Musculoskeletal tissue degeneration is closely associated with aging. Strategies employing autologous adult MSCs from older individuals for transplantation in order to regenerate their own ailing organ or tissues require that we vigorously define MSCs capacity to maintain growth potential and differentiation potential into the desirable cell lineages. We are currently restricted by the limited knowledge about physical parameters, such as biomechanical forces, that influence MSC growth and differentiation capacities. This is particularly important for MSCs isolated from older individuals, for whom little information is available. This special volume aims to serve as an impetus in generating more interest among stem cell researchers and biotechnologists to improve and develop the cell-based therapies of damaged tissue using stem cells.
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