Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Florida have identified a drug that can be used to treat pulmonary hypertension, a disease for which few therapy options exist. The novelty is the way the medicine is delivered; it is grown in the leaves of plants from Penn’s high-tech greenhouse, according to the study published online in the September issue of the journal Hypertension.

In patients with pulmonary hypertension, the arteries of the lungs become constricted, which increases the workload on right side of the heart to pump blood through the lungs. Over time, the right chamber of the heart, which usually is small, becomes enlarged and dysfunctional. Currently, the most successful drugs for the disease cost tens of thousands of dollars.

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