Músculo Cardíaco

Científicos en Israel parecen haber creado una forma de reparar el daño que sufre en corazón tras un infarto. Se trata de un «parche» desarrollado con músculo cardíaco, afirma la investigación publicada en Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences(PNAS) (Actas de la Academia Nacional de Ciencias).

Los investigadores de la Universidad Ben-Gurion del Negev en Beer-Sheva, Israel, señalan que la técnica -que repara las cicatrices que deja el infarto- logró fortalecer los corazones de ratas que habían sufrido ataques cardíacos.

El parche fue cultivado primero en tejido abdominal y posteriormente trasplantado a las áreas dañadas del órgano. Con este experimento se demuestra por primera vez que este tipo de parches pueden en realidad mejorar la salud de un corazón después de que ha resultado lesionado, afirman los expertos.

Los científicos encontraron un aumento en el tamaño del músculo en las zonas dañadas y una mejora en la conducción de los impulsos eléctricos que se necesitan para que el corazón lleve a cabo un bombeo adecuado.

Fallo cardíaco

Los infartos al miocardio ocurren cuando el abastecimiento de sangre al corazón queda interrumpida causando la muerte celular. Si esta restricción de sangre -y la subsecuente escasez de oxígeno- no se restaura a tiempo puede ocurrir daño o muerte del tejido muscular cardíaco, que a menudo es irreversible.

Si la persona logra sobrevivir, el tejido muscular dañado provocará otro trastorno grave: insuficiencia cardíaca, en la que el corazón es incapaz de bombear el volumen adecuado de sangre para satisfacer la demanda del organismo. Los científicos esperan que la nueva técnica conduzca eventualmente al desarrollo de nuevos tratamientos para aliviar este trastorno en los humanos.

Los investigadores afirman que es un procedimiento «simple y seguro» pero agregan que «debido a que la mayoría de los pacientes que sufren infartos son de edad avanzada y una cirugía múltiple puede significar un riesgo grande, la técnica actualmente no es una opción».

Para crear el parche cardíaco, los científicos tomaron células cardíacas de ratas recién nacidas y las cultivaron con una mezcla de factores de crecimiento.

Las células fueron colocadas en estructuras especiales similares a «andamios» para que una vez que se desarrollaran fueran trasplantadas fácilmente. Después de 48 horas, el nuevo tejido fue injertado en el peritoneo -la membrana que recubre el abdomen- donde permaneció durante 7 días y desarrolló una red de vasos sanguíneos.

Posteriormente los científicos retiraron el parche del abdomen y lo trasplantaron a los corazones de ratas que habían sufrido un infarto al miocardio una semana antes. Tal como informan los científicos, 28 días después del trasplante los parches cardíacos mostraron indicios de haberse integrado al músculo cardíaco de los huéspedes, tanto a su estructura como a sus impulsos eléctricos.’

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