Developing New Approaches to Treat Heart Disease

Human cardiomyocytes derived from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) made from a healthy individual. 

The Mercola laboratory is focused on developing new therapies for cardiovascular disease.  Cardiovascular disease, including heart failure, remains a major cause of human mortality worldwide despite advances in clinical management. Our research combines in vitro disease models using cardiovascular cells generated from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) with high throughput screening to define disease mechanisms, identify drug targets and develop drug leads. Since iPSCs are derived from patient biopsies, these cells make it possible to visualize the effect of individual patient genetics on disease, and develop new and effective drugs.

Dr. Mercola is Professor of Cardiovascular Medicine and a member of the Stanford Cardiovascular Institute. He trained at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston and Harvard Medical School. He was on the faculty at Harvard Medical School and then at the Sanford-Burnham-Prebys Medical Discovery Institute and the Department of Bioengineering at the University of California, San Diego prior to relocating to Stanford in 2015. The laboratory is funded by research grants from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine and the Fondation Leducq.

Recent Papers

  • Pandrala, M., Bruyneel, A.A.N., Hnatiuk, A.P., Mercola, M., and Malhotra, S.V. (2022). Designing Novel BCR-ABL Inhibitors for Chronic Myeloid Leukemia with Improved Cardiac Safety. J Med Chem (2022).
  • Hnatiuk, A.P., Bruyneel, A.A.N., Tailor, D., Pandrala, M., Dheeraj, A., Li, W., Serrano, R., Feyen, D.A.M., Vu, M.M., Amatya, P., et al. Reengineering Ponatinib to Minimize Cardiovascular Toxicity. Cancer Res (2022).
  • Perea-Gil, I., Seeger, T., Bruyneel, A.A.N., Termglinchan, V., Monte, E., Lim, E.W., Vadgama, N., Furihata, T., Gavidia, A.A., Arthur Ataam, J., et al. Serine biosynthesis as a novel therapeutic target for dilated cardiomyopathy. Eur Heart J (2022).
  • Vincent, F., Nueda, A., Lee, J. et al. Phenotypic drug discovery: recent successes, lessons learned and new directions. Nat Rev Drug Discov (2022).
  • Peters, M. C. et al., Metabolic Maturation Increases Susceptibility to Hypoxia-induced Damage in Human iPSC-derived Cardiomyocytes. Stem cells translational medicine (2022).
  • Vadgama N., Kreymerman A., Campbell J., et al., SARS-CoV-2 Susceptibility and ACE2 Gene Variations Within Diverse Ethnic Backgrounds. Frontiers in Genetics (2022).