Development of Effective Therapeutic Strategies for Preventing and Treating Cardiovascular Disease
Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis
Related Research Unit(s)
Cardiovascular diseases, including peripheral artery disease (PAD) and myocardial infarction (MI), are leading causes of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Here, we present two approaches that target PAD and MI, respectively. In the first strategy, we investigated an angiogenic patch that encapsulated an optimal combination of angiogenic factors, including Vascular endothelial growth factor, Fibroblast growth factor 2, Epidermal growth factor, and Insulin-like growth factors 1. The patch was tested on hindlimb ischemia mouse models. The result proved that our angiogenic patch successfully saved the limb from limb loss through the angiogenesis mechanism. Therefore, it opens a new era for PAD treatment by protein therapy. In the second strategy, we examined the protective effects of short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) on MI hearts. We employed an engineered bacteria strain that can release and enhance SCFA levels in the circulation system. Myocardial ischemic-reperfusion injury rat models were treated with the bacteria and evaluated the recovery. The result demonstrated that bacteria treatment improved heart function and structure after MI through the anti-inflammation effects of SCFAs. Thus, the strategy suggested a novel and affordable way to protect the hearts from MI using SCFA-producing bacteria.