Show: May 19, 2013:
- Why are employers offering health care incentives?
- Do the benefits of sun exposure outweigh the risks?
- How do we balance?
- Are minimalist running shoes safe?
- Does spirituality affect mental health treatment outcomes?
- How close are researchers to regenerating infant hearts?
- How do kidney exchanges work?
- View all topics for the week
How close are researchers to regenerating infant hearts?
Interview: Eric Olson, M.D., professor and chair, Department of Molecular Biology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas.
Each year, one out of every 125 babies born in the United States has a heart defect. The March of Dimes recently awarded its March of Dime Prize in Developmental Biology to Eric Olson, M.D., a doctor and biologist whose studies focus on mammal and infant heart regeneration. In his studies, Dr. Olson removed large parts of the hearts of infant mice, which were able to regenerate those parts and develop into fully functional adult mice. Dr. Olson found that the younger mice are able to regenerate their hearts early in life, but as they age, the window of regeneration closes. Dr. Olson says these promising results could eventually be used to solve the mystery of human heart regeneration.