Stem cell heart cure to be tested
The study, at Barts and the London NHS Trust, is funded by a charity set up by a man who underwent stem cell treatment for his heart condition in Germany.
The aim will be to determine whether adult stem cells taken from bone marrow can repair damaged heart muscle.
In total, 700 patients will take part in the study, which will test three different forms of stem cell therapy
The first part of the study will involve 300 patients whose hearts are failing because of heart disease or a previous heart attack.
A second arm will involve 200 patients whose hearts are failing specifically because of dilated cardiomyopathy - a heart muscle disorder.
And a final element will involve 200 patients who have just had a heart attack.
Some patients will have stem cells extracted from bone marrow in their hip and injected into their major coronary arteries or directly into their heart.
Others will receive injections of growth factor drugs to try to cause stem cells to spill out of their bone marrow and into their blood without the need for the operation.