Cardiac Electrophysiology group
The human heart beats approximately 3,000,000,000 times in a human life time. Each beat is a cardiac contraction that pumps blood into the blood vessels of the body. The contraction during each beat and the regular rhythm of the heart beats throughout life are intricately orchestrated by the heart’s electrical activity.
Cardiac electrophysiology is the science investigating, diagnosing, treating, manipulating and challenging the electrical activities of the heart. This is what we do.
Our present aim is to understand how lifestyle and disease affect the electrophysiology of the heart. We have built a lab to investigate diurnal and circadian rhythms in cardiac electrophysiology. Moreover, we use disease models and genetically altered mice to mimic clinical, cardiac and non-cardiac disorders, and study the altered cardiac electrophysiology and arrhythmia vulnerability. One example is diabetes: Diabetic patients do not die due to diabetes, but due to the associated cardiovascular problems. We study this.
A broad armamentarium of approaches is key to solving tomorrow’s research questions. In this lab, we take pride in being integrative experimental physiologists, who can draw advantage from many different disciplines, like in-vivo, ex-vivo and cellular electrophysiology, molecular biology, protein chemistry, surgery and pharmacology, to lift and join findings to reach a higher level of understanding.
The specific scientific goal is to elucidate the mechanism by which cardiac electrophysiology is affected by:
- challenges and stressors
We aim to determine the mechanism linking the incidence of sudden cardiac death to sleep and awake phases. This chronobiological avenue may in time prompt us to consider how we can employ biorhythms in our advantage in health care.
We aim to determine how stressors, like hypertrophy and heart failure lead to electrophysiological remodeling and why such challenges trigger arrhythmias and sudden cardiac death.
We aim to determine how diabetes, a frequent co-morbidity, contributes to sudden cardiac death. This may identify a significant cause of death in the large group of diabetic patients.
It is the vision of the laboratory to produce novel, solid and important cardiac electrophysiological knowledge to the benefit of patients suffering from heart disease.