The UCLA scientists have found for the very first time the source of an immune cell that functions an important role in the creation of healthy heart valves. The results could show a way for novel treatments for cardiac valve disorders that are caused by aging, congenital defects, or disease. The study was conducted by Dr. Atsushi Nakano, Associate Professor at UCLA, and was published in the journal Developmental Cell. Based on earlier research by Nakano—which showed that the embryonic heart tube creates blood progenitor cells—the recent study discovered that in turn, those cells generate particular immune cells known as macrophages. The study also disclosed that these heart-derived macrophages are mainly adept at in taking excess tissue, an ability that makes them crucial for the formation and upholding of heart valves.
Reportedly, the human heart has four valves and tissue-paper slender membranes that continuously open and close for managing blood flow via the heart. When the valves do not work properly, the blood flow rate to the body is disturbed, which damages the heart and can cause stroke, heart failure, or sudden death. Nakano said, “When valves are badly damaged, they cannot be repaired and replacement surgery is the simple option. Identifying cells that add to valve health can disclose targets for less-invasive and new therapies.” Presently, physicians have two alternatives for replacement valves, which are mechanical valves (requires enduring use of blood-thinning drugs) and biological valves (made from pig, cow, or human heart tissue that needs to be replaced in 10 to 15 Years).
Recently, UCLA was in news for its study that stated that immunotherapy can be efficient in curing individuals having recurrent glioblastoma. UCLA-led research states that individuals having recurrent glioblastoma, directing immunotherapy before surgery is more useful than utilizing the drug afterward.