The promise and problems of metabolic-based therapies for heart failure

Dianne M. Perez

Despite standard therapies, heart failure patients have high rates of morbidity highlighting the need to develop alternative therapeutic approaches. Heart failure has been described as an energy-starved condition that is hypothesized to drive the pathological remodeling of the heart. Numerous studies have described the metabolic defects that occur when the heart fails and adaptive changes that take place to maintain the energy needed for the heart to function properly. In this minireview we will summarize the metabolic requirements of a normal heart and what happens during failure. We will also summarize the various metabolic therapeutic strategies that have been developed over the years to treat heart failure and their results from clinical trials.