Cytori Therapeutics announced today before the opening bell that the first preclinical study to demonstrate adipose-derived stem and regenerative cells (ADRCs) significantly improved cardiac function after a heart attack has been published. This preclinical study was reported online ahead of print in the International Journal of Cardiology. Funded by Cytori Therapeutics, the study was conducted at Tulane University.

“Treatment of cardiovascular disease, which places one of the greatest burdens on our healthcare system, could be revolutionized by cell therapy,” stated Marc H. Hedrick, M.D., president of Cytori. “We observed a statistically significant improvement in heart function that contributed to our decision to proceed with our APOLLO study. Cardiovascular disease is the most advanced application in Cytori’s product pipeline and could eventually make a substantial contribution to our future commercial activities.”

According to the company, “The APOLLO study is the first clinical trial to investigate uncultured adipose-derived stem and regenerative cells in heart attacks in human patients. Enrollment was recently completed in APOLLO, a double blind, placebo controlled, safety and feasibility trial. Data are expected to be reported in early 2010. The APOLLO study is sponsored by Cytori and has incorporated the Company’s Celution® System to automate the processing of the patients’ cells at the point of care.”

In Cytori’s preclinical study, 17 large animals were treated with their own uncultured adipose-derived stem and regenerative cells immediately after a severe myocardial infarction. Uncultured cells include a multitude of heterogeneous cell types that the company believes facilitate several therapeutic mechanisms. Several functional measurements within the study indicated a significant improvement in both heart function and structure.