Autologous bone marrow mononuclear cell transplantation in patients undergoing coronary artery bypass grafting

Author(s): Mocini D, Staibano M, Mele L, Giannantoni P, Menichella G, et al.

Abstract

Background: Recent studies have shown that autologous bone marrow mononuclear cell (aBM-MNC) transplantation can be effectively performed in human beings either by the coronary route or by endoventricular injections. However, scanty data are available for patients undergoing coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG). Accordingly, the aim of this study was to evaluate the feasibility and safety of aBM-MNC transplantation in patients with recent myocardial infarction undergoing CABG.

Methods and results: The study population included 36 consecutive patients with recent myocardial infarction (< 6 months) undergoing CABG. Eighteen patients (17 men, mean age 64 years) underwent CABG plus aBM-MNC transplantation, whereas 18 subjects undergoing conventional CABG (17 men, mean age 67 years) served as control subjects. Cell transplantation was performed by direct injections in the border zone of the recently infarcted area. An average number of 292 +/- 232 x 10(6) aBM-MNCs was injected in each patient. When compared with control subjects, transplanted patients showed higher values of troponin I peak after CABG (median values of 1.65 ng/mL vs 0.64 ng/mL, P < .001). No major transplant-related adverse event could be detected. During follow-up, transplanted patients had an improvement in left ventricular ejection fraction (from 0.46 to 0.51, P < .05) and wall motion score index (from 1.71 to 1.42, P < .01). The incidence of arrhythmias immediately after CABG and during follow-up was similar in the 2 groups.

Conclusions: Our data support the idea that direct injection of aBM-MNCs in the myocardium during CABG is feasible and safe. Larger studies are needed to assess the efficacy of such an approach in patients undergoing CABG.

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