Chronic administration of the angiogenic growth factors VEGF and bFGF is a promising new strategy in the treatment of acute myocardial infarctions (AMI), but the optimal parameters still need to be determined. The use of single growth factors has yet not been successful in the clinic. Therefor the use of a combination therapy could have great potential because this stimulates the formation of more stable blood vessels. This review shows that the effectiveness of the growth factor treatment appears to be independent of the timing of administration of the growth factor after AMI and of the release pattern that is established by the used administration method. Because data on the efficacy of the used administration method are often lacking, no reliable maximum tolerated or minimal therapeutic dose could be determined. Another important parameter that has been evaluated is the effect of fast reperfusion on the effectiveness of the therapy. The expected positive effects have however shown to be negligible. To overcome differences in study designs, the ´amount-of-growth-factor-per-gram-infarct-per-day´ was calculated. This parameter allows comparison between different study designs and could therefore improve the translation to the clinic. To further improve this translation, more research is necessary to explore the boundaries: later administration times and other growth factor concentrations should be used to determine the optimal parameters of this therapeutic approach
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