Surfing the clinical trials of mesenchymal stem cell therapy in ischemic cardiomyopathy

Stem Cell Res Ther. 2021 Jun 23;12(1):361. doi: 10.1186/s13287-021-02443-1.


While existing remedies failed to fully address the consequences of heart failure, stem cell therapy has been introduced as a promising approach. The present review is a comprehensive appraisal of the impacts of using mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) in clinical trials mainly conducted on ischemic cardiomyopathy. The benefits of MSC therapy for dysfunctional myocardium are likely attributed to numerous secreted paracrine factors and immunomodulatory effects. The positive outcomes associated with MSC therapy are scar size reduction, reverse remodeling, and angiogenesis. Also, a decreasing in the level of chronic inflammatory markers of heart failure progression like TNF-α is observed. The intense inflammatory reaction in the injured myocardial micro-environment predicts a poor response of scar tissue to MSC therapy. Subsequently, the interval delay between myocardial injury and MSC therapy is not yet determined. The optimal requested dose of cells ranges between 100 to 150 million cells. Allogenic MSCs have different advantages compared to autogenic cells and intra-myocardial injection is the preferred delivery route. The safety and efficacy of MSCs-based therapy have been confirmed in numerous studies, however several undefined parameters like route of administration, optimal timing, source of stem cells, and necessary dose are limiting the routine use of MSCs therapeutic approach in clinical practice. Lastly, pre-conditioning of MSCs and using of exosomes mediated MSCs or genetically modified MSCs may improve the overall therapeutic effect. Future prospective studies establishing a constant procedure for MSCs transplantation are required in order to apply MSC therapy in our daily clinical practice and subsequently improving the overall prognosis of ischemic heart failure patients.

Keywords: Clinical trials; Ischemic cardiomyopathy; Mesenchymal stem cells.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cardiomyopathies* / therapy
  • Humans
  • Mesenchymal Stem Cell Transplantation*
  • Mesenchymal Stem Cells*
  • Myocardial Infarction*
  • Prospective Studies