Challenges measuring cardiomyocyte renewal

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


Interventions to effect therapeutic cardiomyocyte renewal have received considerable interest of late. Such interventions, if successful, could give rise to myocardial regeneration in diseased hearts. Regenerative interventions fall into two broad categories, namely approaches based on promoting renewal of pre-existing cardiomyocytes and approaches based on cardiomyogenic stem cell activity. The latter category can be further subdivided into approaches promoting differentiation of endogenous cardiomyogenic stem cells, approaches wherein cardiomyogenic stem cells are harvested, amplified or enriched ex vivo, and subsequently engrafted into the heart, and approaches wherein an exogenous stem cell is induced to differentiate in vitro, and the resulting cardiomyocytes are engrafted into the heart. There is disagreement in the literature regarding the degree to which cardiomyocyte renewal occurs in the normal and injured heart, the mechanism(s) by which this occurs, and the degree to which therapeutic interventions can enhance regenerative growth. This review discusses several caveats which are encountered when attempting to measure cardiomyocyte renewal in vivo which likely contribute, at least in part, to the disagreement regarding the levels at which this occurs in normal, injured and treated hearts. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Cardiomyocyte biology: Cardiac pathways of differentiation, metabolism and contraction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)799-803
Number of pages5
JournalBiochimica et Biophysica Acta - Molecular Cell Research
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 2013


  • Cardiac regeneration
  • Cardiomyocyte proliferation
  • Cardiomyogenesis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology
  • Molecular Biology

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