Research conducted at the VCU Pauley Heart Center profoundly impacts our collective knowledge of heart disease, its treatments, and its cures. Prominent physician-scientists are paramount to our strength as a national heart center. These clinicians engage in research to help us meet and resolve some of our most pressing challenges. And equally as important, they instruct, guide, and mentor current fellows—the leaders of tomorrow.
Our basic and clinical research programs focus on novel pharmacological therapeutic approaches and optimizing outcomes for patients with cardiovascular disease using the latest devices and imaging and pharmacologic techniques. These programs boast a group of world–renowned researchers, including:
- Rakesh C. Kukeja, Ph.D., the Jeanette and Eric Lipman Chair in Cardiology, runs a nationally recognized program in molecular cardiology with research interests in cellular and molecular mechanisms of myocardial ischemia-reperfusion injury, gene therapy, and cell signaling.
- Anindita Das, Ph.D., assistant professor of cardiology, investigates and develops novel pharmacological and genetic therapeutic approaches to reduce injury in the heart following myocardial ischemia.
- Lei Xi, M.D., assistant professor of cardiology, possesses expertise in hypoxia physiology and pathophysiology, myocardial ischemiareperfusion injury, anti-cancer drug–induced cardiotoxicity and heart failure, cardioprotection by pharmacologic agents, and cellular signal transduction.
- Antonio Abbate, M.D., assistant professor of cardiology, serves as principal investigator or co-investigator on three clinical studies and a number of basic science projects, and is founder and senior consultant for the Metaanalysis and Evidence-based Medicine Training in Cardiology Group.
- Qun Chen, M.D., assistant professor of cardiology, studies the role of mitochondrial dysfunction in myocardial injury during ischemia and reperfusion, with a major interest on the identification and characterization of proteins located within the mitochondrial intermembrane space.
- Edward J. Lesnefsky Jr., M.D., professor in the departments of Internal Medicine and Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and chief of cardiology at Hunter Holmes McGuire VA Medical Center, investigates the mechanisms of myocardial cell death during ischemia and reperfusion.
- Mark A. Wood, M.D., professor of cardiology, focuses on catheter ablation research and spearheads an innovative research program that exposes young students to the rigors of science.
A recent $5 million National Institutes of Health construction grant gave the VCU Pauley Heart Center an unprecedented opportunity to renovate 8,900 square feet of outdated laboratory space for basic cardiovascular research. The renovation allows us to grow and expand our existing research base, recruit physician-scientists, and form additional research partnerships with other health sciences schools at VCU and throughout the United States.
Each year thousands of patients trust the Pauley Heart Center with their care. We return that trust with the most knowledgeable, compassionate cardiac care available, using the most advanced procedures and treatments in our region. For more than four decades, our physicians and scientists, nurses, and technicians have saved and improved the lives of people with heart disease.
Cardiology Research Grants*
* American Heart Association, federal government, and individually sponsored
Clinical Procedures Numbers
|Echocardiography and stress testing||11,095||11,687||12,167||13,131||13,779|
|Mechanical circulatory assist devices||9||9||8||24||36|