Unique sugar may delay progression of congestive heart failure. Findings presented at the 2nd Annual Academic Surgical Congress Sponsored by the Association for Academic Surgery and Society of University Surgeons

PHOENIX, AZ, FEB 7, 2007—Heart attacks frequently lead to the progressive onset of congestive heart failure, a severely debilitating heart disease reaching epidemic proportions. As undamaged portions of the heart work to compensate for the loss of damaged tissue the heart dilates and loses its ability to pump blood effectively. In part, this loss of heart function is caused by a depletion of adenosine triphosphate (ATP), which cells use as their primary source of energy. The first in a planned series of studies1 conducted by John Foker, MD, PhD and his team at the University of Minnesota (Minneapolis) showed that D-ribose significantly improved heart function and delayed the onset and progression of congestive heart failure following a heart attack.

Dr. Foker and his colleagues gave an oral presentation at the 2nd Annual Academic Surgical Congress, sponsored by the Association for Academic Surgery and the Society for University Surgeons at the Phoenix Convention Center on Wednesday, February 7. “While we know a great deal about the implications of heart attack on the future function of the heart, there are elements of the sub-cellular events controlling the onset of heart failure we must continue to explore,” explained Dr. Foker, the Robert L. and Sharon G. Kaster Professor of Surgery and the Director of Pediatric Cardiac and Thoracic Surgery at the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN. “We believe much of the issue has to do with the energy level of the heart tissue that is not damaged by the heart attack, and D-ribose is known to improve energy in stressed hearts.”

While this study is an early stage investigation using an animal model of heart failure, cardiovascular surgeon and biochemist Foker is encouraged by the results. “There are more than five million people with congestive heart failure and more than 550,000 cases are added every year,” Foker said. “Treating hearts with D-ribose can improve the ATP concentration of the heart and, following a heart attack, loss of energy can be a major contributor to disease progression.”

Foker added that follow-on studies are underway and will lead to human trials if future results are similarly encouraging.

D-Ribose is a unique sugar made by the body to synthesize many important compounds, including DNA, RNA, and, most importantly, ATP, the “energy currency” of the cells. ATP is critical to health and maintaining normal energy-dependent body functions. Ribose is the essential component in the making of ATP.

D-Ribose has already been shown to increase functional capacity for patients with congestive heart failure (CHF) by improving diastolic heart function, ventilation, exercise capacity, and oxygen-uptake efficiency. Foker’s is the first study to investigate the effectiveness of D-ribose in reducing the onset and delaying the progression of congestive heart failure following a heart attack.

Foker went on to say that, “The implications of these findings are considerable. We look forward to more investigations into the possible benefits of ribose in progression of congestive heart failure and heart attack.” More information on the science and clinical implications of D-ribose in heart disease can be obtained from Bioenergy, Inc. (http://www.bioenergy.com), a privately held, Minneapolis-based life sciences company whose core technology lies in the development and commercialization of products based on the physiological benefits of D-ribose in health and wellness.

1N. Befera, A. Rivard, D. Gatlin, S. Black, J. Zhang, J. Foker, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN, “Ribose Treatment Helps Preserve Function of the Remote Myocardium After Myocardial Infarction,” presented at Academic Surgical Congress, February 2007.