Monday, August 28, 2006

Could Bioengineered Pacemakers Become Reality?

With this report, bioengineered pacemakers might soon become reality.
"In the current study, the researchers delivered a gene encoding a bioengineered cell-surface protein to heart muscle cells of pigs. This protein mimics the combined action of several proteins called HCN ion channels, which play a critical role in maintaining a normal, evenly paced heartbeat. These channels control the flow of sodium and potassium ions in and out of cells that regulate the electrical impulses of the heart."
Many barriers remain before applicable to man, but with the improved understanding of the inner workings of the heart and genetics, who knows?


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