Acute Myocardial Infarction

Acute myocardial infarction is the medical name for a heart attack. A heart attack is a life-threatening condition that occurs when blood flow to the heart muscle is abruptly cut off, causing tissue damage. This is usually the result of a blockage in one or more of the coronary arteries and causes the death of a consistent number of cardiomyocytes, leading to the onset of scar tissue in the heart. In humans, shortly after birth cardiomyocytes stop proliferating and further growth of the myocardium occurs through hypertrophic enlargement of the existing myocytes. As a consequence of the minimal renewal of cardiomyocytes during adult life, repair of cardiac damage through myocardial regeneration is very limited. Thus, the need to develop novel therapies for heart failure (HF) consequent to myocardial infarction (MI) is impelling. Heart failure prognosis remains poor, with mortality estimated at 40% of patients at only 4 years from diagnosis. Most notably, pharmacological treatment of HF has not drastically progressed in the last 30 years.