Paper Alert: Enhanced Cardiac Repair

Enhanced cardiac repair by telomerase reverse transcriptase over-expression in human #cardiac #mesenchymal stromal cells

The study shows that hTERT can activate pro-regenerative signalling within PDGFRα + #cMSCs and enhance cardiac repair after myocardial infarction. An increased understanding of hTERT’s role in mesenchymal stromal cells from various organs will favourably impact clinical regenerative and anti-cancer therapies.

The growing understanding of cardiac cellular composition2 and cell biology3 raises intriguing future therapeutic possibilities. Specifically, cardiac #fibroblasts, a heterogeneous population potentially including progenitor cells, may be permissive to manipulation for cardiac repair4.

Progenitor and stem cell senescence is regulated by telomerase activity and telomere length5,6. Telomeres are DNA protein structures that protect chromosome ends from degradation and fusion. Telomerase is a ribonucleoprotein complex that maintains telomere length7. Dysfunction of telomerase and telomere shortening are associated with impaired tissue repair in pathological conditions including ageing, HF and MI8,9. Furthermore, telomerase activation, by expressing human telomerase reverse transcriptase (hTERT), has been explored as a strategy to elongate telomeres and rejuvenate aged stem cells10,11,12Terttransgenic expression promotes cardiomyocyte proliferation, hypertrophy and survival13 and Tert gene therapy delays ageing14. Therefore TERT manipulation presents a promising method to improve progenitor cell function.

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