Cardiovascular research

Theme Leader: Roger Dampney

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This Research Theme undertakes research through several laboratory groups, with extensive cross-disciplinary inputs from some groups primarily associated with other Research Themes.

Cardiovascular disease related research is most strongly represented, with major programs examining new and innovative approaches to improve the management of heart attacks, the immunopathology of atherosclerosis and inherited risk factors for heart disease.

Respiratory disease research includes investigations of the consequences of sleep abnormalities, which themselves contribute to other major morbidities such as cardiovascular disease, and the lung complications of severe malaria.

Cross-disciplinary inputs are made from groups studying neuroendocrine regulation of blood pressure, and from electrophysiological studies of complex membrane events in muscle cells, both normally and following pathological insult.

There are a number of areas of particular research strength within the Research Theme. These include:

  1. clinical and experimental studies of cardiovascular disease;
  2. the roles of gene expression and polymorphisms in the development of cardiovascular disease;
  3. mechanisms controlling heart function and vascular tone.

There is considerable interaction between individual laboratories in those areas. For example, the laboratories of Hambly and dos Remedios have a long-standing collaboration on studies of muscle function, using common technologies that they jointly developed.

As with the other Research Themes, there is a plan to increase interactions between all the members of the "Cardiovascular" Theme through a variety of mechanisms. Coordinated use of existing technologies and major equipment facilities between basic and clinical scientists will underpin improved translational research outputs.

There are excellent opportunities to build on the numerous existing interactions between the members of the "Cardiovascular" Theme and the other Research Themes.

Desired impact on knowledge and/or practice

While some of the work described above constitutes basic research, the benefits of which will only be reaped in future years, much of the research has more direct and immediate clinical application to the health of the people of NSW. Of particular note are:

  • Projects that focus on diagnosis and screening of disease, for example, finding new biomarkers for early ischaemia of the heart, and determining genetic lesions that lead to cardiac and vascular disease.
  • Projects that will lead to new, more cost-effective treatments for diseases, for example, discovery of new treatments for myocardial ischaemia (early phase of heart attacks) that will substantially reduce the impact of a heart attack on the long term survival of the individual, or drugs that will minimise the impact of atherosclerosis.
  • Projects that will lead to prevention of disease, for example, understanding the causes, and better management, of sleep disorders.

Laboratory Heads & Senior Researchers

Contact details Laboratory

Associate Professor Bob Bao 
T: +61 2 9351 6156
F: +61 2 9351 3429

Mucosal Immunology Laboratory

Professor David Celermajer
T: +61 2 9515 6519
F: +61 2 9550 6262

Cardiovascular Disease Detection and Prevention

Professor Roger Dampney 
F: +61 2 9351 6470

Cardiovascular Neuroscience Research Laboratory

Associate Professor Stuart Cordwell 
T: +61 2 9351 6050
F: +61 2 9351 4726

Cardiac Proteomics Laboratory

Professor Cristobal Dos Remedios 
T: +61 2 9351 3209
F: +61 2 9351 6546

Muscle Research Unit

Associate Professor Brett Hambly 
T: +61 2 9351 3059
F: +61 2 9351 3429

Cardiac Proteomics Laboratory
Macromolecular Structure Laboratory

Professor Emeritus Brian Morris 
T: +61 2 9351 3688
F: +61 2 9351 2227

Basic and Clinical Genomics Laboratory

Professor Peter Thorn  
T: +61 4 1686 2729

Diabetes and Insulin Secretion Laboratory

Dr Paul Witting
T: 02 9114 0524
F: 02 9351 3429

Vascular Biology Laboratory
Redox Biology Group