Leonie E. Paulis1, Alexandra Klein2, Tessa Geelen1, Bernd Fleischmann2, Wilhelm Roell2, Klaas Nicolay1, Gustav J. Strijkers1
1Biomedical NMR, Department of Biomedical Engineering, Eindhoven University of Technology, Eindhoven, Netherlands; 2Institute for Physiology, Life & Brain Centre, University of Bonn, Bonn, Germany
Regenerative therapy after myocardial infarction by embryonic cardiomyocyte (eCM) transplantation has potential to increase infarct contractility induced by the electrical coupling of eCM with native myocardium. In this study, it was shown with in vivo (contrast enhanced) cardiac MRI that besides improved global cardiac function (ejection fraction and cardiac output) and reduced infarct volume, eCMs indeed significantly improved infarct wall thickening (WT) in a mouse model of myocardial infarction. These effects were not observed after transplantation of skeletal myoblasts (SMs) or mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), which lack the intrinsic ability of electrical coupling and also did not differentiate into cardiomyocytes.