The probable cause of pulmonary hypertension is the cancer-like excessive growth of cells in the wall of the lung blood vessels. These cells trigger the lumen to constrict and put pressure on the right ventricle of the heart. Lumen is known to be the path wherein blood travels. Investigators from the University of Alberta supposedly discovered that this excessive cell growth can be reversed by targeting the mitochondria of the cell which regulates its metabolism of the cell and results in cell death.
The two drugs dichloroacetate (DCA) or Trimetazidine (TMZ) are probably used to target mitochondria. On consuming any one of these medications, the activity of mitochondria seems to elevate, inducing cell death and regressing pulmonary hypertension in an animal model. The latest research was conducted on regression rather than dilating the constricted vessels.
Researchers believe the new findings can open doors for new therapies to regress the disease. Tests will be undertaken in clinical trials in the near future. The results of the investigation may not only be applicable for pulmonary hypertension patients, but also other vascular diseases and cancer.
The research is published in the August edition of Journal Science Translational Medicine.