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Biological factor 'aids regeneration of blood vessels'

Monday 18th April 2011
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The production of highly functional new blood cells could be stimulated in oxygen-starved tissues, research has revealed.

A study, published online in Nature Biotechnology, found that if a biological factor, known as fibroblast growth factor 9 (FGF9), is delivered at the same time the body is trying to form new blood vessels in damaged tissue, it becomes a successful attempt.

Dr Pickering, of the Robarts Research Institute, indicated that the discovery could be used in cardiac patients.

"Coronary bypass surgery and stenting are important treatments but are not suitable for many individuals," he said.

"Because of this, there has been considerable interest in recent years in developing biological strategies that promote the regeneration of a patient's own blood vessels."

This follows news that a promising blood thinning drug known as Dabigatran etexilate could lessen the risk of stroke in atrial fibrillation patients.

The drug, known as Pradaxa, could change the lives of people with heart rhythm disorders, after research found that the medication cut the risk of stroke by between 30 and 39 per cent.

Written by Angela Newbury

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