June 13, 2012
New Cause Of Cardiac Damage After Heart Attack In Type 1 Diabetes
Study reveals new targets for diagnosis and therapy
After people with type 1 diabetes have a heart attack, their long-term chance of suffering even more heart damage skyrockets. But the reason has long puzzled scientists. Now researchers at Joslin Diabetes Center have identified the misstep that sparks this runaway chronic damage and a promising way to block it.
In the current work, Lipes and her team identified the factor that triggers an autoimmune response against cardiac muscle tissue following a heart attack. Furthermore, they developed a way to selectively stop it. They also showed the presence of a similar process in human patients, opening the door for possible ways to improve outcomes of patients with type 1 diabetes after myocardial infarction.
Their research focused on type 1 diabetes, for which cardiovascular disease accounts for 65