Milica Radisic and her team recently announced in the scientific journal, Nature Methods, that they have developed a new method of maturing human heart cells by applying electrical pulses to the cells, in a pattern that mimics the fetal cardiac development of humans. The new technology, called ‘Biowire’ uses silk sutures to grow human heart cells which are mature enough to be used in research and transplantation. Electrical pulse is applied to the cardiomyocytes that mimics the fetal heart rate of humans to stimulate a natural environment for the heart cells to mature in. This new process has achieved much better results than previous methods to mature stem cells derived from human caridomyocytes.
Radisic, who is the Canada Research Chair in Functional Cardiovascular Tissue Engineering, was named a “Top Innovator under 35” by MIT Technology Review and has received the Order of Ontario and the Young Engineers of Canada 2012 Achievement Award. Her team included Dr. Sara Nunes, a scientist and cardiac and vascularization specialist at the University Health Network (UHN) Toronto, and Jason Miklas, a graduate student at the University of Toronto. Read the full story