October 27, 2017 5:10 am
Updated: October 27, 2017 11:12 am

Vancouver medical researchers make heart-pounding breakthrough

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Anyone suffering from heart arrhythmia won’t be in pain for much longer, thanks to a team of doctors at St. Paul’s Hospital in Vancouver.

Medical researchers there have grown heart cells that can mimic abnormal heart rhythms.

Dr. Zachary Laksman and his team say it’s the first time these kind of cells have been created in a petri dish, and will allow them to figure out which drugs work best for people with heart arrhythmia.

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“Our goal is that we can identify which patients would benefit from one drug versus another drug. Or determine which drug could be dangerous or harmful before prescribing the medication to the person,” he explains.

READ MORE: Vancouver’s St. Paul’s Hospital research team makes medical breakthrough

Allan Horwood has been dealing with atrial fibrillation for about 10 years, and is part of the study.

“Imagine if your heart is going twice as fast as it should all day long,” he explains.

“It’s kind of like you’re exercising all day long. But you’re not. Your heart is. Your heart is just pumping extremely fast. So you’re just exhausted at the end of the day. So by 7:30, you can hardly keep your eyes open.”

Horwood’s DNA was just some of what used to create the heart cells.

Researchers have taken samples from about 300 patients, and will do tests to determine what form of treatment works best for each patient.

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