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New Directions

Issue: Spring

Cover Photo

Dr. Keith Horvath looks at a flask with bone marrow stromal cells, also known as mesenchymal stem cells. When isolated, the cells are found to make large amounts of growth factors that stimulate new blood vessel formation and help encourage repair of damaged tissue.

The discovery of the special properties of these cells was made by Dr. Horvath, Dr. Yifu Zhou, center, and Dr. Suna Wang, research scientists in the cardiothoracic surgery research lab at NHLBI. As part of an FDA-approved study, eligible patients having open heart surgery are given these select stem cells to see if they can help improve blood flow to the heart muscle.

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