Cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of global deaths. The current paradigm in medicine seeks
novel approaches for the treatment of progressive or end-stage diseases. The organ transplantation option is limited
in availability, and unfortunately, a significant number of patients are lost while waiting for donor organs.
Animal studies have shown that upon myocardial infarction, it is possible to stop adverse remodeling in its tracks
and reverse with tissue engineering methods. Regaining the myocardium function and avoiding further deterioration
towards heart failure can benefit millions of people with a significantly lesser burden on healthcare systems
worldwide. The advent of induced pluripotent stem cells brings the unique advantage of testing candidate drug
molecules on organ-on-chip systems, which mimics human heart in vitro. Biomimetic three-dimensional constructs
that contain disease-specific or normal cardiomyocytes derived from human induced pluripotent stem cells
are a useful tool for screening drug molecules and studying dosage, mode of action and cardio-toxicity. Tissue
engineering approach aims to develop the treatments for heart valve deficiency, ischemic heart disease and a wide
range of vascular diseases. Translational research seeks to improve the patient's quality of life, progressing towards
developing cures, rather than treatments. To this end, researchers are working on tissue engineered heart
valves, blood vessels, cardiac patches, and injectable biomaterials, hence developing new ways for engineering
bio-artificial organs or tissue parts that the body will adopt as its own. In this review, we summarize translational
methods for cardiovascular tissue engineering and present useful tables on pre-clinical and clinical applications.
Keywords: Cardiovascular tissue engineering, vascular tissue engineering, heart valve tissue engineering, angiogenesis, myocardial
infarction, cardiac patch, injectable biomaterials, drug testing, decellularization, extracellular matrix.
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