Posts Tagged ‘heart prevention’

Emory Honored with International Heart Failure Research Grant!

Emory is one of 17 collaborating centers from 10 countries participating in a new international consortium project aimed at earlier detection and prevention of heart failure.

The European Commission has awarded a grant of almost $16 million (EUR 12 million) to the Heart Omics in Ageing (HOMAGE) project, with a goal of better identifying more specific biomarkers for heart failure and then developing methods for earlier detection of risk in the elderly population.

A biomarker, or biological marker, is a characteristic that is objectively measured and evaluated as an indicator of normal biological processes, pathogenic processes, or pharmacologic responses to a therapeutic intervention. It serves as a guide for health and physiology related assessments.

The prevalence of heart failure is increasing worldwide because of the aging population and a rising trend of risk factors for heart disease — such as diabetes, obesity and hypertension. Heart failure is a major cause of death and disability in the world and remains the most frequent cause of hospitalization for patients over 65 years old. An essential step in preventing heart failure is to first accurately identify individuals at high-risk.

Traditional risk factors such as high blood pressure still remain important clinical guides but we are now seeing more cases of heart failure develop in individuals who do not have any specific high risk diseases. Therefore, this research will try to determine more accurate methods of detecting heart failure risk using biomarkers leveraging the latest technology.

This project will evaluate data from 30,000 patients from 10 countries. Emory investigators will work with the National Institutes of Aging-funded Health Aging and Body Composition Study, to assess the value of this approach among 3,000 elderly individuals in the U.S.

HOMAGE will also lead a clinical trial to look for novel treatments of heart failure that can be targeted specifically to those patients at risk.

This research has the potential to benefit thousands of individuals in the U.S. and researchers at Emory are very excited to work with colleagues across Europe in this trans-Atlantic collaboration.

About Dr. Javed Butler
Professor of Medicine, Emory University School of Medicine
Director of Heart Failure Research at Emory

After completing medical school from Aga Khan University in Karachi, Pakistan, Dr. Butler did his residency and chief residency at Yale University, Masters in Public Health from Harvard University, and cardiology fellowship including transplant training at Vanderbilt University. Before moving to Emory University, he was the director for the Heart and Heart-Lung Transplant programs at Vanderbilt University. He also has done special cardiac imaging training at the Massachusetts General Hospital. He is on the Editorial Board for the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, Journal of Cardiac Failure, American Heart Journal and Congestive Heart Failure. He served on the American College of Cardiology Committee on Heart Failure and Transplantation. He is board certified in Cardiology, Internal Medicine, and Nuclear Cardiology. Currently he serves as the Deputy Chief Science Advisor for the American Heart Association. While also heavily involved in research and clinical care at Emory. Dr. Butler’s research focuses primarily on the disease progression, outcomes, and prognosis determination in patients with heart failure, with special emphasis on patients undergoing cardiac transplantation and left ventricular assist device placement. He has published many original research articles in multiple peer reviewed journals. He serves on the national board, events committee, and steering committees of several multicenter clinical trials. Dr. Butler is involved in the evaluation and management of all aspects of patients with heart failure including cardiac transplantation and left ventricular assist devices. He is also involved in the cardiac CT program at Emory University.

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Two Emory Physicians Receive Prestigious Cardiovascular Awards from the American College of Cardiology!

Emory physicians Nanette Wenger, MD and Vinod Thourani, MD were recently awarded prestigious honors from the American College of Cardiology.

Nanette K. Wenger, MD, professor of medicine in the Division of Cardiology at Emory University School of Medicine, was recently honored by the American College of Cardiology with its inaugural 2013 Distinguished Mentor Award in recognition of her dedication to mentorship and tremendous role in shaping the careers of current and future leaders in cardiology.

“Throughout my career, mentoring women and men in cardiology, including students, residents, cardiology trainees, faculty, and community physicians, has been equally a passion and a reward,” says Wenger. “The science and practice of cardiology will be advanced by its emerging leaders, and it has been my privilege to contribute to their progress.”

Dr. Wenger is internationally recognized as a leading authority on coronary heart disease in women and has accumulated dozens of prestigious awards throughout her career. Her greatest legacy is changing the face of cardiology. In 1993, Wenger coauthored a landmark article in the New England Journal of Medicine that aggressively addressed the prejudice that heart disease was a man’s disease. Research led by Wenger resulted in significant changes to the way drugs and hormones

Dr. Wenger came to Emory University and Grady Memorial Hospital in 1958 and since then she has been a trailblazer and icon in the field of cardiology as author and co-author of more than 1,400 scientific and review articles and book chapters.  Wenger helped write the 2011 Guidelines for Preventing Cardiovascular Disease in Women. In 2009, her fiftieth year at Emory, Wenger’s extraordinary career achievements were celebrated with the Lifetime Achievement Award from the American College of Cardiology.

Vinod Thourani, MD, Associate Professor of Medicine at Emory University School of Medicine and cardiothoracic surgeon at the Emory Heart & Vascular Center has been awarded the W. Proctor Harvey, MD, Young Teacher Award at the 2013 American College of Cardiology’s (ACC). He was one of two recipients to receive the prestigious award this year, which is awarded every two years.  The award recognizes and honors a promising young member of the American College of Cardiology who has distinguished him or herself by dedication and skill in teaching, and to stimulate, as far as possible, continued careers in education. Thourani was selected from among a highly competitive group of academic cardiologists to receive the award.

“I am honored to be given this teaching award from the ACC,”” says Thourani, who is an associate professor of surgery, in the Division of Cardiothoracic Surgery at Emory University School of Medicine. “”Teaching the next generation of physicians, and mentoring them to be the best they can be, is critical in academic medicine, and to the health care system as a whole. I thoroughly enjoy the teaching component of my profession.”

About Dr. Wenger

Dr. Wenger is Professor of Medicine in the Division of Cardiology at the Emory University School of Medicine and a Consultant to the Emory Heart and Vascular Center. Dr. Wenger is a graduate of Hunter College (summa cum laude) and the Harvard Medical School. She had her residency training in Internal Medicine and Cardiology fellowship at the Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City, and additional Fellowship in Cardiology at the Emory University School of Medicine. Dr. Wenger is a Past Vice-President of the American Heart Association, past Governor for Georgia of the American College of Cardiology, is a Past-President of the Georgia Heart Association. She has served as a member and frequently chairperson of over 500 committees, scientific advisory boards, task forces, and councils of the American Medical Association, the American College of Cardiology, the American Heart Association, the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, and the Society of Geriatric Cardiology. Dr. Wenger is also active in a variety of state and local charitable, cultural, and religious organizations. She is a Fellow of the American Heart Association, the American College of Cardiology, the Society of Geriatric Cardiology, the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation, and the American College of Chest Physicians. She is a Master of the American College of Physicians. The American Heart Association awarded her the Distinguished Achievement Award, the Women in Cardiology Mentoring Award, and the highest award of the Association, the Gold Heart Award 

About Dr. Thourani

Dr. Thourani specializes in percutaneous transcatheter (transfemoral, transapical, transapical) and minimally invasive aortic valve surgery, minimally invasive mitral valve repair and replacement, aortic valve surgery and ascending aortic aneurysm repair, lone and concomitant atrial fibrillation surgery, and on and off pump coronary artery revascularization. As Associate Director of the Cardiothoracic Surgery Clinical Research Unit, Dr. Thourani is developing innovative strategies and devices to treat cardiothoracic diseases, specifically in the field of structural heart disease and valve surgery. He is a local surgical Co-PI for the multi-center PARTNER transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) trials. PARTNER 1 was instrumental in influencing the FDA’s 2011 approval of the the SAPIEN™ transfemoral transcatheter heart valve for treatment of high-risk patients with aortic stenosis. In 2012 Dr. Thourani presented the results of the PARTNER 2 trial, which showed that TAVR was not only as effective as the alternative minimally invasive technique, but might also be safer in the short term. Dr. Thourani is a member of multiple national leadership and publication committees for the treatment of valve surgery using percutaneous or minimally invasive techniques

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