Kytai Nguyen, a bioengineering associate professor, is working on the two-year,
“It’s a narrowing of the arteries that affects so many people. There isn’t a lot of research being done on it right now,” Nguyen said. “Many times people with this disease are faced with amputation or death.”
About 30 percent of people with peripheral artery disease must have their affected leg amputated within two years and about 50 percent die within five years.
Peripheral artery disease happens when plaque builds up in a person’s arteries, which carry blood to all parts of the body. Plaque is made up of fat, cholesterol, calcium and other substances in the blood. The disease usually affects the legs but it can have consequences elsewhere in the body.
“We have created this nanoparticle scaffold, which we inject into the body,” Nguyen said. “Those scaffolds attract stem cells that help in building natural vasculature to replace narrowed or shut-down blood vessels.”
Current doctors use angioplasty or place artificial stents in failed blood vessels.
“It has the potential to save many patients’ lives in addition to millions of dollars in health care costs,” Tang said.
Nguyen’s work is an example of research excellence at The
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