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Heart Disease

Disks made from cocoons of the tasar silkworm may find use as patches for regrowing cardia...

Although people do regularly recover from heart attacks, the heart itself never entirely “gets better.” This is because cardiac muscle tissue doesn’t regenerate – any that dies in the event of a heart attack will only be replaced with inactive scar tissue, and the heart’s performance will be permanently compromised as a result. Scientists have responded by trying to develop heart patches made of materials that act as nanoscale scaffolds, upon which new cardiomyocytes (heart cells) can grow. Materials used for these scaffolds have included fibrin, nanofiber, gold nanowires and polymer. Now, new research is suggesting that silkworm silk may be a better choice than any of those.  Read More

Eating high levels of chocolate could be associated with a significant reduction in the ri...

Chocolate lovers are unlikely ever to need encouragement to indulge, but just in case, here's some good news: researchers have found that higher levels of chocolate consumption have been associated with a 37% reduction in the risk of developing cardiovascular disease, 31% reduction in diabetes and a 29% reduction for stroke.  Read More

A diagram depicting Tao's system for thinning blood using magnetic fields (Image: Temple U...

Overly-viscous blood can damage blood vessels and lead to heart attacks. Therefore, people who are at risk of heart attacks take medications such as Aspirin, in order to thin their blood. Such drugs can have unpleasant side effects, however, and can only be taken a certain number of times per day. Prof. Rongjia Tao, a physicist from Philadelphia's Temple University, now thinks he might have come up with a better way of thinning human blood - he subjects it to magnetic fields.  Read More

A new technique for regenerating blood vessels has implications for victims of coronary ar...

Researchers at the University of Western Ontario have discovered a new strategy for helping the body make blood vessels in vulnerable or damaged tissue. The approach, which has implications for the treatment of victims of coronary artery disease, involves the use of a protein named fibroblast growth factor 9 (FGF9) to assist the "supporting" cells of new blood vessels as they are formed by the body.  Read More

Most of us are aware that heart disease is the leading cause of death in the US – and globally. But did you know that one in three Americans (36.9 percent) have some form of heart disease, including high blood pressure, coronary heart disease, heart failure, stroke and other conditions. By 2030, approximately 116 million people in the United States (40.5 percent) will have some form of cardiovascular disease. The American Heart Association predicts treatment costs could triple in the next 20 years, from US$273 billion to $818 billion (in 2008 dollar values), if effective prevention strategies are not developed.  Read More

Should cholesterol reducing drugs be served with fast food? (Photo: Suat Eman via freedigi...

A study from researchers at Imperial College London seriously suggests that it may be wise for fast food outlets to provide statin drugs free of charge with the condiments, so that customers can neutralize the heart disease dangers of fatty food. Statins are a class of drugs that can reduce the amount of "LDL" cholesterol in the blood. Some data suggests that this reduction is accompanied by a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease including heart attack and stroke.  Read More

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