VANCOUVER, British Columbia, June 25, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Novoheart (“Novoheart” or the “Company”) (TSX-V:NVH) (FWB:3NH) is pleased to announce a presentation was delivered on June 22nd, 2018, entitled “Modeling Cardiac Dysfunction of Friedreich’s Ataxia Using Ventricular Sheets, Tissues and Chambers Engineered from Human Pluripotent Stem Cells,” at the Annual Meeting of the International Society for Stem Cell Research in Melbourne, Australia. The presentation includes data from research conducted with Pfizer Inc. on a 3D engineered human cardiac tissue disease model of Friedreich’s ataxia (FRDA), a neurodegenerative disease in which patients most often die of heart complications. The new disease model helps capture both electrical and mechanical defects of the heart observed in patients with FRDA.
FRDA is a hereditary, juvenile-onset neuro-muscular disease that afflicts over 1 in 50,000 people worldwide1, with symptoms including loss of muscular coordination and severe cardiac conditions. The latter, including heart failure and arrhythmias, is the main cause of death in FRDA patients2. Mouse models of FRDA have previously been created, but their non-human nature limits their application in drug development for human patients. As the first engineered 3D human cardiac tissue constructs of Friedreich’s ataxia, developed using Novoheart’s proprietary MyHeartTM Platform, the novel disease model captures key clinical symptoms seen in FRDA patients, including electrical and contractile dysfunction of the heart, thereby providing a highly effective human screening and discovery platform for developing novel therapeutics.
“We are very excited by the outcome of this study, and hope this will accelerate the development of safe and effective new therapies for FRDA patients. Also, by demonstrating the biomimetic capabilities of our MyHeartTM Platform for modeling diseased hearts, we are hoping to establish new standards for creating a proprietary library of disease models and expand our presence in drug discovery and precision medicine,” said Novoheart CSO, Dr. Kevin Costa.
1 Delatycki et al. (2000) J Med Genet 37, 1–8.
2 Tsou et al. (2011) J Neurol Sci 307, 46–49.
Novoheart is a global stem cell biotechnology company pioneering an array of next-generation human heart tissue prototypes. It is the first company in the world to have engineered miniature living human heart pumps that can revolutionize drug discovery, helping to save time and money for developing new therapeutics. Also known as 'human heart-in-a-jar', Novoheart’s bio-artificial human heart constructs are created using state-of-the-art and proprietary stem cell and bioengineering approaches and are utilized by drug developers for accurate preclinical testing as to the effectiveness and safety of new drugs, maximizing the successes in drug discovery whilst minimizing costs and harm caused to patients.
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