There is considerable excitement about the use of stem cells for cardiovascular disease. Stem cells are unspecialized cells with the unique property to self-renew or make copies of themselves and to differentiate into specialized cells. The goal of stem cell therapy is to enhance the body's natural process of regeneration. There are a considerable number of stem cells currently under investigation for patients with heart attacks, angina, heart failure, and peripheral arterial disease. We have made considerable progress but have many questions left to answer.
Timothy Henry, MD, FACC, is Chief of Cardiology at Cedars Sinai Heart Institute in Los Angeles, California. Dr. Henry earned his bachelor's degree at the University of North Dakota, graduated from medical school at University of California, San Francisco, in 1982, and was chief medicine resident from 1982--1986 at University of Colorado Health Sciences Center. He completed his training as a cardiology fellow, chief cardiology fellow, and interventional cardiology fellow at University of Minnesota in 1991. His research interests include interventional cardiology, acute myocardial infarction and novel therapies, including stem cell and gene therapy, for patients who are not candidates for standard revascularization techniques.
Dr. Henry has published over 250 manuscripts and book chapters and has served on the Research Committee for the Minnesota Affiliate of the AHA and the Emergency Care Committee for the ACC; he currently serves on the Advisory Committee for the AHA Mission: Lifeline Program, the AHA Acute Cardiac Care Committee of the Council on Clinical Cardiology and on the ACC Interventional Subcommittee. He has served as national principal investigator of multiple large, multicenter trials in acute coronary syndromes, myocardial infarction and angiogenesis including several ongoing cardiovascular stem cell trials including RENEW, ALLSTAR and ATHENA. He is also principal investigator for 1 of 7 NIH Clinical Cardiovascular Stem Cell Centers. He is a fellow at ACC and SCAI and a member of Alpha Omega Alpha and the AHA Council on Clinical Cardiology.
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Reprinted with permission from Timonthy Henry