Like cancer, Cardiovascular diseases is said to be responsible for a very high percentage of casualties across the world. Statistics say, nearly 18 million people die from heart related health issues around the world every other year.
The good news is that researchers have been attempting to tackle the challenge. Better still, reports say there is a breakthrough as researchers have successfully grown a functional miniature heart ventricle that beats and also transfer liquid the same way the real ventricle beats and pumps blood.
The one millimeter-long, 0.04 inches, reversed-engineered ventricle was made by researchers from the University of Toronto and University of Montreal in Canada.
According to a statement by Sargol Okhovatian of Toronto University, the model beats well like real ventricles and pumps fluid just like the muscular exit-chamber of a human embryo’s heart.
“With our model, we can measure ejection volume – how much fluid gets pushed out each time the ventricle contracts as well as the pressure of that fluid.
“Both of these were nearly impossible to get with previous models,” Okhovatian noted.
According to experts, the breakthrough, already published in Advanced Biology, is expected to open fresh new opportunities in the development of cardiovascular conditions, give researchers ethical, more accurate alternative to existing approaches and generally develop novel drugs and therapies.
Senior author, Milica Radisic, a chemist from the University of Toronto, pointed out that making of the artificial ventricle is the first successful attempt to create a truly 3D model of a ventricle.
“Until now, there have only been a handful of attempts to create a truly 3D model of a ventricle, as opposed to flat sheets of heart tissue.
“With these models, we can study not only cell function, but tissue function and organ function, all without the need for invasive surgery or animal experimentation.
“We can also use them to screen large libraries of drug candidate molecules for positive or negative effects,” Radisic said.