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Ultrasound therapy to promote blood flow and save heart muscle during heart attack: A Pilot Study

Professor Kazuaki Negishi, Institution: University of Sydney

2021 Vanguard Grant  

Years funded: 2022-2023  

Ischaemic heart disease is the leading cause of death worldwide. Heart attack is a life-threatening condition, requiring an urgent procedure to open the blocked heart artery. However, 50% of the patents with the successful procedure have blockages in tiny blood vessels of the heart (MicroVascular Obstruction, MVO), which causes poorer prognosis. To date, no treatment improved the MVO, except for the sonothrombolysis (STL) in a small trail. STL uses high power ultrasound to open the tiny arteries whilst infusing a contrast agent. Professor Negishi's research team will conduct a large multicentre clinical trial to see if STL can salvage more heart muscle and improve the heart function and patient’s prognosis. If proven positive, STL can be readily applicable in clinical practice because it has been used in Australia. i.e. This proposal aims the repurposing of an existing diagnostic tool to treatment of heart attack. Furthermore, STL can be delivered in ambulances to treat heart attach early, reduce heart muscle damage and ultimately save more lives (separate funding).

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