The Division of Cardiology conducts clinical and bench research. Clinical research includes funding by the NIH, pharmaceutical, industry, and other sources.
National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute-funded research
- Impact of race and genetic factors on beta-blocker effectiveness in heart failure (Principal Investigator: David E. Lanfear, M.D.)
- Cardiac energy metabolism in heart failure (Principal Investigator: Hani Sabbah, Ph.D.)
Many other clinical research therapies are offered as well.
Cardiovascular Research Laboratory
The Division’s Cardiovascular Research Laboratory conducts research into the causes and novel treatments of heart failure. With a focus on translational research, investigators are concerned with understanding the basic mechanisms leading to progression of heart failure and ventricular remodeling, including assessment of drugs and devices that may reverse this process.
Ongoing research explores the potential benefits of a family of compounds that preferentially shift the fuel used for energy production in the failing heart from fat to carbohydrates, a process with potential to improve energy production and therefore the pumping function of the failing heart. Additional studies focus on the signaling mechanisms that foster dysfunction of cardiac muscle cells during the development of heart failure, the examination of the flow of small ions like sodium across the cardiac muscle cell membrane, and how abnormalities in this process can lead to fatal arrhythmias.
Beyond molecular biology and traditional biochemistry, the Cardiovascular Research Laboratory is focused on developing and testing novel devices for treating heart failure. Such devices include vagus nerve stimulation (VNS) and spinal cord stimulation (SCS). VNS has been shown to markedly improve function of the failing heart and is currently being tested in clinical trials in patients with heart failure.