Heart Research Follow-up Program

The Heart Research Follow-up Program (HRFUP) is dedicated to organizing and conducting cardiovascular research studies aiming to improve diagnosis and management of patients with heart diseases. The HRFUP, under the direction of Dr. Wojciech Zareba and Dr. Arthur J. Moss, has extensive experience in the design, conduct, and analysis of world-wide, multicenter, clinical research studies ranging from 100-3500 subjects.

There are several areas of interest by researchers of the HRFUP, but the main theme of the research includes preventing sudden cardiac death, identifying patients at risk of cardiac mortality, understanding mechanisms of disease processes that underlie risk of death and cardiac arrhythmias. 

Research activities of HRFUP are supported by federal grants from the National Institute of Health (NIH) and from corporate sponsors. Recent NIH studies include projects focused on:

  •  Long QT syndrome (LQTS) – inherited arrhythmia disorder associated with ECG abnormalities and increased risk of cardiac arrhythmias and sudden death usually at a young age. This project includes several studies translating information from basic science labs to bedside in order to better identify and better treat patients. 
  •  Arrhythmogenic Right Ventricular Cardiomyopathy/Dysplasia (ARVC/D) – inherited disorder with structural and functional abnormalities of right ventricle frequently associated with increased propensity to cardiac arrhythmias and sudden death. This also is very much a translational project.
  •  Risk Stratification in Postinfarction Patients with Implantable Cardiac Defibrillators – project identifying novel parameters of risk of cardiac arrhythmias and mortality among postinfarction patients receiving cardiac defibrillators.
  •  Repolarization Abnormalities as Indicator of Increased Risk of Cardiac Arrhythmias – project evaluating existing and developing new methods of ECG signal processing for risk stratification.
  •  Telemetric and Holter Electrocardiology Warehouse (THEW) – repository of ECG databases serving research communities worldwide regarding their research focused on mechanisms and management of cardiac arrhythmias.
  •  Thrombogenic and Lipid Factors in Postinfarction Patients (THROMBO) – project focused on novel biochemical and genetic markers of risk of cardiac events.
  •  Cardiovascular Effects of Air Pollution – line of research projects identifying risk associated with increased levels of air pollution and evaluating mechanisms of harmful effect of air pollution on the human body.

 There are several corporate-sponsored projects with the line of Multicenter Automatic Defibrillator Implantation Trials as the most important projects identifying new indications for prevention of sudden death or prevention of heart failure progression: 

  • Multicenter Automatic Defibrillator Trial II (MADIT II)– which established new broadly approved indication for primary prevention of mortality in high-risk postinfarction patients.
  • Multicenter Automatic Defibrillator Trial - Cardiac Resynchronization Therapy (MADIT-CRT) – recently completed trial establishing new paradigm for reducing risk of heart failure progression in patients with impaired heart function.
  • Multicenter Automatic Defibrillator Trial – Reducing Inappropriate Therapy (MADIT-RIT) trial evaluating improvements in device programming aiming to reduce risk of inappropriate therapy.
  •  LQTS ICD Registry – project focused on improving risk stratification and management of LQTS patients with implantable cardiac defibrillator
  • Wearable Defibrillator Projects – evaluating usefulness of this device in high-risk heart failure patients and in patients on renal dialysis. 

 

In addition, HRFUP operates a state-of-the-art ECG core lab serving numerous studies and trials with data acquisition and interpretation of standard ECGs, holter recordings, as well as implanted device interrogations.

All these projects are supported by experienced and dedicated team of researchers and associated personnel ensuring high-quality of conducted research, following regulatory guidelines and recent practices in managing clinical studies and trials.