Heart

Rebecca Burger: HowExplosive Whipped CreamCanister Caused HeartAttack — Doctor Explains

Rebecca Burger’s freak whipped cream canister accident may not be as bizarre as we thought. HollywoodLife.com EXCLUSIVELY reached out a doctor to hear the medical science behind the deadly explosion.

As if there weren’t enough deathly weapons in the world, now we have to add whipped cream canisters to the list. Rebecca Burger, a French Instagram model, died on June 18 at 33 years old after experiencing an explosion to the chest — caused by an unsuspecting canister of whipped cream. As news spread, readers dubbed her accident the freakiest home death they’ve heard in years, but Dr. Irving Sobel, MD says there’s a logical medical reason behind the impact. “It sounds like she had blunt trauma to the chest, there are several ways that can cause a heart attack,” she tells HollywoodLife.com EXCLUSIVELY. “A blow to…

Immune cells play surprising role in steady heartbeat

macrophages and heart cells
IT’S ELECTRIFYING Macrophages (green) “plug in” to heart cells (light purple and pink), providing an electrical boost that helps the heart cells contract and pump blood, a study in mice finds.

Immune system cells may help your heart keep the beat. These cells, called macrophages, usually protect the body from invading pathogens. But a new study published April 20 in Cell shows that in mice, the immune cells help electricity flow between muscle cells to keep the organ pumping.

Macrophages squeeze in between heart muscle cells, called cardiomyocytes. These muscle cells rhythmically contract in response to electrical signals, pumping blood through the heart. By “plugging in” to the cardiomyocytes, macrophages help the heart cells receive the signals and stay on beat.

Researchers have known for a couple of years that macrophages live in healthy heart tissue. But their specific functions “were still very much a mystery,” says Edward Thorp, an immunologist at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago. He calls the study’s conclusion that macrophages electrically couple with cardiomyocytes “paradigm shifting.” It highlights “the functional diversity and physiologic importance of macrophages, beyond their role in host defense,” Thorp says.

Matthias Nahrendorf, a cell biologist at Harvard Medical School, stumbled onto this electrifying find by accident.

Curious about how macrophages impact the heart, he tried to perform a cardiac MRI on a mouse genetically engineered to not have the immune cells. But the rodent’s heartbeat was too slow and irregular to…

Scientists Transform Spinach Leaves Into Working Human Heart Tissue

Scientists from the Worcester Polytechnic Institute have turned a spinach leaf into working human heart tissue, and this could revolutionize the treatment of damaged organs.

Tissue engineering (also called regenerative medicine) attempts to create functional human tissue from cells in a laboratory. Its goal is to replace tissues and organs that fail due to disease, genetic errors, or other reasons. Scientists have already created large-scale human tissue in a lab, but without a vascular network that carries blood, a big part of that tissue dies.

To fight that, the researchers took a spinach leaf and removed its plant cells, leaving a frame made of cellulose. “Cellulose is biocompatible [and] has been used in a wide variety of regenerative medicine applications, such as cartilage tissue engineering, bone tissue engineering, and wound healing,” the authors write in their paper.

They bathed the remaining frame in live human cells and they grew on the leaf’s tiny veins. The team…