Yuanjia Zhu receives the American Heart Association Resident Prize Award at the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions 2019

Dr. Yuanjia Zhu, a 3rd year resident in Stanford's Integrated Cardiothoracic Surgery Training Program, a first year PhD student in the Department of Bioengineering at Stanford University, and a postdoctoral research fellow in Dr. Joseph Woo's laboratory, was awarded the Council on Cardiovascular Surgery and Anesthesia (CVSA) Resident Prize Award at the American Heart Association (AHA)'s Scientific Sessions 2019 in Philadelphia, PA. Dr. Zhu presented her clinical research entitled "Does Donor Left Ventricular Mass to Recipient Size Affect Heart Transplantation Outcomes? A Single-Center Study Using a Fifty-Year Registry" in an oral abstract competition. She received this award from the AHA CVSA chair, Dr. Michael Fischbein. (November 2019)

Michael Ma Accepted into KL2 Mentored Career Development Program

The Stanford Clinical Translational Science Award (CTSA) Program has accepted Dr. Michael Ma into the KL2 Mentored Career Development Program. The KL2 Mentored Career Development Program is funded through the NIH’s National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS). Dr. Ma is among 4 scholars selected from a highly competitive application process to receive support. (November 2019)

Natalie Lui Receives Western Thoracic Surgical Association 2019 Donald B. Doty Educational Award for "3D printing for cardiothoracic surgical education: a mediastinoscopy model"

Dr. Lui's team printed a 3D model of the mediastinum to teach surgery residents and fellows the relevant anatomy for a procedure called mediastinoscopy, which is done to biopsy lymph nodes in the chest in some patients with lung cancer. The intent is to teach residents using the model at the beginning of their rotation on the thoracic surgery service, as well as before every mediastinoscopy in the OR, and residents and attendings are given surveys to evaluate the model. (September 2019)

Ioannis Karakikes Awarded AHA Innovative Project Award for "Genetic Engineering to Protect Against Cardiovascular Disease"

The goal of this study is to leverage recent discoveries in human genetics and technological breakthroughs in genome engineering to develop novel therapies for cardiovascular disease. This study will explore the feasibility of using new modalities, such as CRISPR-mediated base-editing, to introduce naturally occurring mutations in the genome that could lower triglyceride levels, potentially conferring cardioprotection. (July 2019)

Ngan Huang Awarded NIH Grant for "Engineered matrix microarrays to enhance the regenerative potential of iPSC-derived endothelial cells "

This proposal aims to improve the clinical efficacy of iPSC-EC transplants through the design of a novel combinatorial family of engineered extracellular matrices (eECMs) with independently tunable biochemical and biomechanical cues to allow identification of optimal eECMs that promote iPSC-EC angiogenic potential. An in vitro array of 279 unique, combinatorial eECMs will be screened for enhancement of iPSC-EC viability, phenotype, and function, and optimal eECMs will be validated in a preclinical animal model of PAD. (April 2019)

Yuanjia Zhu Awarded Thoracic Surgery Foundation Grant for "Bioengineered Autologous Cytokine-eluting Arterialized Conduits using Tri-Layered Cell Sheet Technology"

The Thoracic Surgery Foundation (TSF) Resident Research Fellowship Award is designed to provide salary and/or direct experimental support for surgical trainees who wish to acquire investigational skills. Emphasis in making the award is placed on the potential of the applicant, based on prior accomplishments, and the quality of the educational experience for the applicant. Through this project, Dr. Zhu aims to bioengineer a novel, autologous, cytokine-eluting, arterialized vessel conduit using cell sheet technology and characterize in vivo efficacy and impact of the bioengineered conduit in a rodent hindlimb ischemia model. She received this award from TSF president, Dr. Joseph Bavaria. (January 2019)

Maedeh Zamani Awarded AHA Postdoctoral Fellowship for "Stiffness Modulates Endothelial-to-Mesenchymal Transition in Stenotic Vascular Grafts"

This grant is awarded to enhance the integrated research and clinical training of postdoctoral applicants who are not yet independent. The applicant must be embedded in an appropriate research group with the mentorship, support, and relevant scientific guidance of a research sponsor. Recognizing the unique challenges that clinicians, in particular, experience in balancing research and clinical activity, this award mechanism aims to be as flexible as possible to enable applicants to develop academic careers in research alongside fulfilling clinical service commitments. (January 2019)

Hanjay Wang Awarded Resident Prize at the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions 2018

Dr. Hanjay Wang, a 4th year resident in Stanford’s Integrated Cardiothoracic Surgery Training Program and a postdoctoral research fellow in Dr. Joseph Woo’s laboratory, was awarded the Council on Cardiovascular Surgery and Anesthesia (CVSA) Resident Prize at the American Heart Association’s (AHA) Scientific Sessions 2018 in Chicago, IL. Dr. Wang presented his research entitled “Computationally-Engineered Analog of Stromal Cell-Derived Factor 1α Preserves the Mechanical Properties of Infarcted Myocardium Under Planar Biaxial Tension” in an oral abstract competition for a panel of judges and received his award from AHA president Dr. Ivor J. Benjamin and CVSA chair Dr. Jennifer Lawton. (November 2018)

Joseph Shrager Awarded NIH Grant for "A Mechanistic Clinical Trial of JAK Inhibition to Prevent Ventilator-induced Diaphragm Dysfunction"

This study intends to prove that blocking the molecular mechanisms whose blockade prevents VIDD in animals, will indeed prevent the development of VIDD in humans as well. We believe that this evidence will serve as the required basis for proceeding with large, ICU-based clinical trial(s) of a drug to prevent VIDD. (August 2018)

Hanjay Wang Awarded AHA Postdoctoral Fellowship for "Identifying the mechanism and therapeutic potential of collateral artery formation in the ischemic heart"

Even with optimal medical therapy and revascularization, many survivors of acute myocardial infarction (MI) develop heart failure due to unaddressed microvascular malperfusion. In the setting of MI, collateral arteries within the coronary vasculature are cardioprotective, improve survival, and can restore microvascular perfusion. The prophylactic activation and augmentation of collateral artery growth therefore represents an exciting therapeutic strategy to prevent myocardial injury associated with MI. Through this project, Dr. Wang plans to investigate several critical questions concerning the biology of collaterogenesis in the heart, the answers to which may guide development of a future translatable therapy. (July 2018)

Ioannis Karakikes Awarded NIH Grant for "Unraveling the pathogenesis of familial dilated cardiomyopathy towards precision medicine"

Dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) is a leading cause of heart failure. The emergence of induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) technology offers an experimental human-based model to predict individual disease manifestations and design targeted therapies. This project advances the concept that patient stem cell derived heart cells can serve as a new paradigm to fill the knowledge gaps in our understanding of how certain gene mutations lead to the DCM phenotype, and ultimately promote the implementation of precision medicine. (June 2018)

Frederick Grady Recieves Meharry Medical College 62nd Annual Student Research Day Award

During the Meharry Medical College 62nd Annual Student Research Day, MS2 students presented their summer research to their peers and a panel of judges in each of the following categories: Basic Science Research, Translation Research and Clinical Research. An award of first, second or third place were given to students with the best presentations in their respective category. (May 2018)

Ngan Huang Awarded NIH Grant for "Aligned Nanofibrillar Scaffolds Enhance Angiogenesis and Viability in Ischemia"

This study examines the role of spatially patterned nano-scale biomaterials in enhancing the potential of stem cell-derived endothelial cells to survive and restore blood flow in the setting of peripheral arterial disease. The results of the proposed small and large animal studies will improve the efficacy stem cell therapy for treating peripheral arterial disease. (February 2018)

Patpilai Kasinpila Awarded Thoracic Surgery Foundation Grant for "Evaluation of sustained release engineered stromal cell-derived factor 1-alpha analogue in injectable hydrogels in ovine myocardial infarction model"

These grants will help advance treatment options for patients with heart and lung diseases and offer much-needed assistance to underserved patients in developing countries, including Kenya, Mongolia, Nepal, Nigeria, Peru, Rwanda, and Uganda. (February 2018)

Karina Nakayama Awarded NIH Grant for "Spatial Patterning Modulates Tissue Revascularization and Regeneration"

This current series of studies will develop an engineered therapeutic that is capable of restoring both vascular and muscular function to injured tissues by using spatial cell patterning to enhance the angiogenic potential of vascular endothelial cells. These studies will provide fundamental insights that will inform future regenerative strategies aimed at restoring blood flow to ischemic tissues for the treatment of a broad range of vascular diseases. (January 2018)

Ioannis Karakikes Awarded NIH Grant for "miR-152:  A Novel Regulator of Diabetic Cardiomyopathy"

MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are newly discovered regulators of gene expression in the heart. Karakikes's team will investigate the role of miR-152 in the pathogenesis and progression of diabetic cardiomyopathy. This knowledge should ultimately be of value for understanding the etiology of the disease and they will define potential therapeutic targets for the future treatments. (December 2017)

Anson Lee Awarded Thoracic Surgery Foundation Grant for "Identifying the Common Final Pathway in Post-Operative Atrial Fibrillation with Transcriptome Profiling"

This award aims to foster the development of surgeon scientists in cardiothoracic surgery; increasing knowledge and innovation to benefit patient care. (July 2017)

Michael Fischbein Awarded NIH Grant for "Marfan Aortic Embryologic Origin Influences miR-29b Regulators and Targets"

Thoracic aortic aneurysm is a potentially fatal disease, increases in frequency with age, and represents one of the 15 major causes of death in this county. Investigating mechanisms that cause aortic wall degeneration during aneurysm development will potentially open the door for innovative preventative approaches by providing new targets for therapeutic strategies. Discoveries from this project may translate into clinical practice and enhance the health of patients with aortic aneurysms. (May 2017)

Ioannis Karakikes Awarded AHA Innovative Research Grant for "Defining Genetic Susceptibility And Molecular Pathways of Dilated Cardiomyopathy Toward Precision Medicine"

This research reviews the progress and challenges in the detection of rare and common variants in dilated cardiomyopathy and systolic heart failure, and the particular challenges in accurate and informed variant interpretation, and in understanding the effects of these variants. It also discusses how increasing genetic knowledge is changing clinical management. Harnessing genetic data and translating it to improve risk stratification and the development of novel therapeutics represents a major challenge and unmet critical need for patients with heart failure and their families. (January 2017)

Joseph Woo Awarded NIH Grant for "Angiogenic Tissue Engineering to Limit Post-Infarction Ventricular Remodeling"

Heart attack and its complications comprise a global health problem for which there are few highly effective treatments. As an innovative therapy, this proposal seeks to amplify the body's native repair machinery by stimulating vascular progenitor cells in the bone marrow and then specifically directing them to the heart to grow new perfusing blood vessels to the damaged heart muscle and providing a clinically viable treatment for human disease. (February 2012)