Scientists from Yale University have developed a “biological bypass” around a life-threatening blocked artery. The research could reduce or even eliminate the need for invasive surgery while preventing heart attacks before they become an issue.
“Instead of doing a surgical bypass or stenting, you could induce the growth of new arteries with a biological bypass,” said Michael Simons, a doctor at Yale University and co-author of a recent paper in the Journal of Clinical Investigation. “This would be a major step in how we treat cardiovascular disease.”
Clogged arteries can kill a person through heart attacks, strokes and other medical emergencies. For years doctors have cleaned clogged blood vessels by inserting a balloon into an artery and expanding it. The balloon compresses fatty deposits that build up on the walls of arteries, and opens blood vessels. If the vessel is plugged beyond repair, doctors remove the offending artery and replace it with another blood vessel, usually one from the patients leg — an invasive and costly procedure.