Development of a blood purification method for the treatment of patients with acute myocardial infarction
Dr. Ahmed Sheriff
Charité University Medicine Berlin, Clinic of Nephrology and Internal Intensive Care Medicine, as well as the Clinic of Cardiology, Campus Virchow Klinikum
Recipient: Charité University Medicine Berlin
Funding: GO-Bio Phase I (01.06.2008 - 31.07.2009, 777.692 Euro)
Heart attack and stroke count among the most common serious acute diseases in the industrialised world. A characteristic of these acute diseases is a dramatic increase in levels of a specific protein, the C-reactive protein (CRP), in the blood of patients. By activating the immune system, this protein ultimately increases the area of infarct damage. The biochemist Ahmed Sheriff has been investigating CRP for many years and has now placed the protein at the center of a new therapeutic approach. This work is being carried out alongside heart and kidney specialists at Charité University Medicine Berlin, Martin Möckel and Ralf Schindler.
The approach of the research team is as follows: Following an infarction, the higher levels of CRP in the blood are targetedly reduced, thereby increasing the performance of the heart. This involves the use of a blood purification method in which the patient’s blood is cleaned of CRP molecules outside of the body via a so-called ‘CRP adsorber’, before being returned to the patient. The GO-Bio project is aiming at the development of a marketable CRP-adsorber prototype for use in patients with myocardial infarction, as well as clinical testing in humans in a first pilot study. The founding of a company for the commercialisation of the procedure is also envisaged.