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Heart Function Unimproved After Stem Cell Stimulation

No better than placebo at improving function after heart attack

THURSDAY, April 10 (HealthDay News) -- Stem cell mobilization by granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF) is no better than placebo at improving heart function after a heart attack, according to a pooled analysis in the April 15 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

Dietlind Zohlnhofer, M.D., from Technische Universitat Munchen in Munich, Germany, and colleagues performed a meta-analysis of 10 randomized clinical trials published from 2003 to 2007 involving 445 patients that examined the effect of stem cell mobilization by G-CSF after acute myocardial infarction.

The researchers found that both the placebo and G-CSF groups had significant improvements in left ventricular ejection fraction, which was not significantly enhanced by G-CSF. There was also no significant difference in the reduction of infarct size between the two groups.

"The good news is that G-CSF used immediately after myocardial infarction seems safe, even with concurrent angioplasty, but this meta-analysis does call into question the idea of administering G-CSF alone after myocardial injury," Samuel C. Dudley, Jr., M.D., Ph.D., and David Simpson, from the University of Illinois at Chicago, write in an accompanying editorial.

Dudley discloses financial relationships with pharmaceutical companies.

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