New publication out of the Nanocardiology Lab

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We are excited to share that former OSU BME students Louisa Mezache, PhD, and Andrew Soltisz, PhD (both of whom matriculated this summer) have published a new article in JACC: Clinical Electrophysiology along with BME Associate Professor Rengasayee Veeraraghavan. Veeraraghavan’s Nanocardiology Lab seeks to understand the structural underpinnings of electrical signal propagation in the heart, and how their disruption leads to potentially life-threatening arrhythmias.

Their new article titled “Vascular Endothelial Barrier Protection Prevents Atrial Fibrillation by Preserving Cardiac Nanostructure” described a low-cost drug therapy to prevent atrial fibrillation (AF) in its earliest stages. AF is a disease where the upper chambers of the heart are out of rhythm and beat more quickly and chaotically than normal. AF poses a potential risk for stroke and heart failure and affects about 3% of the US population. Patients with AF also have damaged blood vessels that leak and cause water to pool between cells in the heart. Previous work from the Nanocardiology Lab has linked this excessive water retention to the occurrence of irregular heartbeats in AF patients. Based on this insight, they developed a therapy to prevent the blood vessels from leaking too much in order to prevent AF.

This work was completed as part of Dr. Mezache’s doctoral dissertation work. She is now pursuing postdoctoral research in the laboratory of Prof. Christophe Leterrier at Aix-Marseille University (Marseille, France). If you’re curious about this research, be sure to check out the video abstract for the article featuring 3D animation created by Ohio State film student Cleo Somohano.

illustration of proposed strategy for mechanistically derived antiarrhythmic therapy. The novel therapy is a vascular barrier protection at the pathological vascular leak