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J. Cardiovasc. Dev. Dis., Volume 7, Issue 4 (December 2020) – 9 articles

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Open AccessArticle
Predictive Value of Pre-Operative 2D and 3D Transthoracic Echocardiography in Patients Undergoing Mitral Valve Repair: Long Term Follow Up of Mitral Valve Regurgitation Recurrence and Heart Chamber Remodeling
J. Cardiovasc. Dev. Dis. 2020, 7(4), 46; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcdd7040046 - 20 Oct 2020
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Abstract
The “ideal” management of asymptomatic severe mitral regurgitation (MR) in valve prolapse (MVP) is still debated. The aims of this study were to identify pre-operatory parameters predictive of residual MR and of early and long-term favorable remodeling after MVP repair. We included 295 [...] Read more.
The “ideal” management of asymptomatic severe mitral regurgitation (MR) in valve prolapse (MVP) is still debated. The aims of this study were to identify pre-operatory parameters predictive of residual MR and of early and long-term favorable remodeling after MVP repair. We included 295 patients who underwent MV repair for MVP with pre-operatory two- and three-dimensional transthoracic echocardiography (2DTTE and 3DTTE) and 6-months (6M) and 3-years (3Y) follow-up 2DTTE. MVP was classified by 3DTTE as simple or complex and surgical procedures as simple or complex. Pre-operative echo parameters were compared to post-operative values at 6M and 3Y. Patients were divided into Group 1 (6M-MR < 2) and Group 2 (6M-MR ≥ 2), and predictors of MR 2 were investigated. MVP was simple in 178/295 pts, and 94% underwent simple procedures, while in only 42/117 (36%) of complex MVP a simple procedure was performed. A significant relation among prolapse anatomy, surgical procedures and residual MR was found. Post-operative MR ≥ 2 was present in 9.8%: complex MVP undergoing complex procedures had twice the percentage of MR ≥ 2 vs. simple MVP and simple procedures. MVP complexity resulted independent predictor of 6M-MR ≥ 2. Favorable cardiac remodeling, initially found in all cases, was maintained only in MR < 2 at 3Y. Pre-operative 3DTTE MVP morphology identifies pts undergoing simple or complex procedures predicting MR recurrence and favorable cardiac remodeling. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mitral Valve Development and Disease)
Open AccessArticle
Effect of Evolocumab on Lipoprotein(a) and PCSK9 in Healthy Individuals with Elevated Lipoprotein(a) Level
J. Cardiovasc. Dev. Dis. 2020, 7(4), 45; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcdd7040045 - 15 Oct 2020
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Abstract
Background and aims: The aim of this study was to investigate the influence of a single injection of Evolocumab on the dynamics of Lp(a), fractions of apoB100-containing lipoproteins, PCSK9, and their complexes in healthy individuals with elevated Lp(a) levels. Methods: This open-label, 4-week [...] Read more.
Background and aims: The aim of this study was to investigate the influence of a single injection of Evolocumab on the dynamics of Lp(a), fractions of apoB100-containing lipoproteins, PCSK9, and their complexes in healthy individuals with elevated Lp(a) levels. Methods: This open-label, 4-week clinical study involved 10 statin-naive volunteers with Lp(a) >30 mg/dL, LDL-C < 4.9 mmol/L, and a moderate risk of cardiovascular events. The concentrations of Lp(a), lipids, PCSK9, circulating immune complexes (CIC), and plasma complexes of PCSK9 with apoB100-containing lipoproteins (Lp(a)–PCSK9 and LDL–PCSK9) were measured before and each week after Evolocumab (MABs) administration. Results: After a single dose injection of 140 mg of MABs, the median concentration of PCSK9 in serum increased from 496 to 3944 ng/mL; however, the entire pool of circulating PCSK9 remained bound with MABs for 2–3 weeks. LDL-C level decreased significantly from 3.36 mmol/L to 2.27 mmol/L during the first two weeks after the injection. Lp(a) concentrations demonstrated multidirectional changes in different patients with the maximal decrease on the second week. There were no positive correlations between the changes in levels of Lp(a), LDL-C, and TC. The change in the amount of circulating complex of PCSK9–Lp(a) was significantly less than of PCSK9–apoB100 (−5% and −47% after 1 week, respectively). Conclusions: A single administration of monoclonal antibodies against PCSK9 (Evolocumab) in healthy individuals with hyperlipoproteinemia(a) resulted in a decrease of Lp(a) of 14%, a 5% decrease in PCSK9–Lp(a), a 36% reduction of LDL-C, a 47% decrease in PCSK9–apoB100 and a tenfold increase in total serum PCSK9 concentration. Full article
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Open AccessReview
An Appreciation of Anatomy in the Molecular World
J. Cardiovasc. Dev. Dis. 2020, 7(4), 44; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcdd7040044 - 15 Oct 2020
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Abstract
Robert H. Anderson is one of the most important and accomplished cardiac anatomists of the last decades, having made major contributions to our understanding of the anatomy of normal hearts and the pathologies of acquired and congenital heart diseases. While cardiac anatomy as [...] Read more.
Robert H. Anderson is one of the most important and accomplished cardiac anatomists of the last decades, having made major contributions to our understanding of the anatomy of normal hearts and the pathologies of acquired and congenital heart diseases. While cardiac anatomy as a research discipline has become largely subservient to molecular biology, anatomists like Professor Anderson demonstrate anatomy has much to offer. Here, we provide cases of early anatomical insights on the heart that were rediscovered, and expanded on, by molecular techniques: migration of neural crest cells to the heart was deduced from histological observations (1908) and independently shown again with experimental interventions; pharyngeal mesoderm is added to the embryonic heart (1973) in what is now defined as the molecularly distinguishable second heart field; chambers develop from the heart tube as regional pouches in what is now considered the ballooning model by the molecular identification of regional differentiation and proliferation. The anatomical discovery of the conduction system by Purkinje, His, Tawara, Keith, and Flack is a special case because the main findings were never neglected in later molecular studies. Professor Anderson has successfully demonstrated that sound knowledge of anatomy is indispensable for proper understanding of cardiac development. Full article
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Open AccessReview
A Rare Presentation of Common Arterial Trunk with Intact Ventricular Septum
J. Cardiovasc. Dev. Dis. 2020, 7(4), 43; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcdd7040043 - 12 Oct 2020
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Abstract
Common arterial trunk is a rare anomaly on its own, but with an intact ventricular septum it is extremely rare. An unexpected finding at autopsy prompted a review of the literature and a review of the developmental considerations associated with the outflow tracts. [...] Read more.
Common arterial trunk is a rare anomaly on its own, but with an intact ventricular septum it is extremely rare. An unexpected finding at autopsy prompted a review of the literature and a review of the developmental considerations associated with the outflow tracts. The case presented was an intrauterine fetal death at 37 weeks gestation. At autopsy, the only anatomic abnormalities were pulmonary dominant common arterial trunk with an intact ventricular septum, ventriculo-arterial septal defect, coarctation and widely patent arterial duct. A review of the literature and the developmental concepts related to the outflow tracts of the developing heart demonstrate the rare nature of this particular variation of common arterial trunk. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Embryonic Mouse Cardiodynamic OCT Imaging
J. Cardiovasc. Dev. Dis. 2020, 7(4), 42; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcdd7040042 - 04 Oct 2020
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Abstract
The embryonic heart is an active and developing organ. Genetic studies in mouse models have generated great insight into normal heart development and congenital heart defects, and suggest mechanical forces such as heart contraction and blood flow to be implicated in cardiogenesis and [...] Read more.
The embryonic heart is an active and developing organ. Genetic studies in mouse models have generated great insight into normal heart development and congenital heart defects, and suggest mechanical forces such as heart contraction and blood flow to be implicated in cardiogenesis and disease. To explore this relationship and investigate the interplay between biomechanical forces and cardiac development, live dynamic cardiac imaging is essential. Cardiodynamic imaging with optical coherence tomography (OCT) is proving to be a unique approach to functional analysis of the embryonic mouse heart. Its compatibility with live culture systems, reagent-free contrast, cellular level resolution, and millimeter scale imaging depth make it capable of imaging the heart volumetrically and providing spatially resolved information on heart wall dynamics and blood flow. Here, we review the progress made in mouse embryonic cardiodynamic imaging with OCT, highlighting leaps in technology to overcome limitations in resolution and acquisition speed. We describe state-of-the-art functional OCT methods such as Doppler OCT and OCT angiography for blood flow imaging and quantification in the beating heart. As OCT is a continuously developing technology, we provide insight into the future developments of this area, toward the investigation of normal cardiogenesis and congenital heart defects. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Cauterization as a Simple Method for Regeneration Studies in the Zebrafish Heart
J. Cardiovasc. Dev. Dis. 2020, 7(4), 41; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcdd7040041 - 03 Oct 2020
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Abstract
In the last two decades, the zebrafish has emerged as an important model species for heart regeneration studies. Various approaches to model loss of cardiac myocytes and myocardial infarction in the zebrafish have been devised, and have included resection, genetic ablation, and cryoinjury. [...] Read more.
In the last two decades, the zebrafish has emerged as an important model species for heart regeneration studies. Various approaches to model loss of cardiac myocytes and myocardial infarction in the zebrafish have been devised, and have included resection, genetic ablation, and cryoinjury. However, to date, the response of the zebrafish ventricle to cautery injury has not been reported. Here, we describe a simple and reproducible method using cautery injury via a modified nichrome inoculating needle as a probe to model myocardial infarction in the zebrafish ventricle. Using light and electron microscopy, we show that cardiac cautery injury is attended by significant inflammatory cell infiltration, accumulation of collagen in the injured area, and the reconstitution of the ventricular myocardium. Additionally, we document the ablation of cardiac nerve fibers, and report that the re-innervation of the injured zebrafish ventricle is protracted, compared to other repair processes that accompany the regeneration of the cauterized ventricle. Taken together, our study demonstrates that cautery injury is a simple and effective means for generating necrotic tissue and eliciting a remodeling and regenerative response in the zebrafish heart. This approach may serve as an important tool in the methods toolbox for regeneration studies in the zebrafish. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Zebrafish Heart Development, Regeneration, and Disease Modelling)
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Open AccessReview
In Full Force. Mechanotransduction and Morphogenesis during Homeostasis and Tissue Regeneration
J. Cardiovasc. Dev. Dis. 2020, 7(4), 40; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcdd7040040 - 01 Oct 2020
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Abstract
The interactions of form and function have been the focus of numerous studies in the context of development and more recently regeneration. Our understanding on how cells, tissues and organs sense and interpret external cues, such as mechanical forces, is becoming deeper as [...] Read more.
The interactions of form and function have been the focus of numerous studies in the context of development and more recently regeneration. Our understanding on how cells, tissues and organs sense and interpret external cues, such as mechanical forces, is becoming deeper as novel techniques in imaging are applied and the relevant signaling pathways emerge. These cellular responses can be found from bacteria to all multicellular organisms such as plants and animals. In this review, we focus on hemodynamic flow and endothelial shear stress during cardiovascular development and regeneration, where the interactions of morphogenesis and proper function are more prominent. In addition, we address the recent literature on the role of extracellular matrix and fibrotic response during tissue repair and regeneration. Finally, we refer to examples where the integration of multi-disciplinary approaches to understand the biomechanics of cellular responses could be utilized in novel medical applications. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Left Ventricular Noncompaction Is More Prevalent in Ventricular Septal Defect Than Other Congenital Heart Defects: A Morphological Study
J. Cardiovasc. Dev. Dis. 2020, 7(4), 39; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcdd7040039 - 25 Sep 2020
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Abstract
Left ventricular noncompaction (LVNC) is a condition characterized by prominent ventricular trabeculae and deep intertrabecular recesses and has been described as a possible substrate for arrhythmias, thromboembolism, and heart failure. Herein, we explored the prevalence of LVNC morphology among hearts with congenital heart [...] Read more.
Left ventricular noncompaction (LVNC) is a condition characterized by prominent ventricular trabeculae and deep intertrabecular recesses and has been described as a possible substrate for arrhythmias, thromboembolism, and heart failure. Herein, we explored the prevalence of LVNC morphology among hearts with congenital heart defects (CHD). We examined 259 postnatal hearts with one of the following CHD: isolated ventricular septal defect (VSD); isolated atrial septal defect (ASD); atrioventricular septal defect (AVSD); transposition of the great arteries (TGA); isomerism of the atrial appendages (ISOM); Ebstein’s malformation (EB); Tetralogy of Fallot (TF). Eleven hearts from children who died of non-cardiovascular causes were used as controls. The thickness of the compacted and non-compacted left ventricular myocardial wall was determined and the specimens classified as presenting or not LVNC morphology according to three criteria, as proposed by Chin, Jenni, and Petersen. Normal hearts did not present LVNC, but the CHD group presented different percentages of LVNC in at least one diagnostic criterium. The prevalence of LVNC was respectively, according to Chin’s, Jenni´s and Petersen´s methods: for VSD—54.2%, 35.4%, and 12.5%; ASD—8.3%, 8.3%, and 8.3%; AVSD—2.9%, 2.9%, and 0.0%; TGA—22.6%, 17%, and 5.7%; ISOM—7.1%, 7.1%, and 7.1%; EB—28.6%, 9.5%, and 0.0%; TF—5.9%. 2.9%, and 2.9%. VSD hearts showed a significantly greater risk of presenting LVNC when compared to controls (Chin and Jenni criteria). No other CHD presented similar risk. Current results show some agreement with previous studies, such as LVNC morphology being more prevalent in VSDs. Nonetheless, this is a morphological study and cannot be correlated with symptoms or severity of the CHD. Full article
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Open AccessReview
New Concepts in the Development and Malformation of the Arterial Valves
J. Cardiovasc. Dev. Dis. 2020, 7(4), 38; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcdd7040038 - 24 Sep 2020
Viewed by 296
Abstract
Although in many ways the arterial and atrioventricular valves are similar, both being derived for the most part from endocardial cushions, we now know that the arterial valves and their surrounding structures are uniquely dependent on progenitors from both the second heart field [...] Read more.
Although in many ways the arterial and atrioventricular valves are similar, both being derived for the most part from endocardial cushions, we now know that the arterial valves and their surrounding structures are uniquely dependent on progenitors from both the second heart field (SHF) and neural crest cells (NCC). Here, we will review aspects of arterial valve development, highlighting how our appreciation of NCC and the discovery of the SHF have altered our developmental models. We will highlight areas of research that have been particularly instructive for understanding how the leaflets form and remodel, as well as those with limited or conflicting results. With this background, we will explore how this developmental knowledge can help us to understand human valve malformations, particularly those of the bicuspid aortic valve (BAV). Controversies and the current state of valve genomics will be indicated. Full article
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