Centre for Cardiovascular Sciences

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Research in Cardiovascular Sciences in the College of Medical and Dental Sciences and the College of Life and Environmental Sciences in the University of Birmingham is co-ordinated through the Centre for Cardiovascular Sciences by Professors and other representatives of other key areas in Cardiovascular Sciences.

The Centre plays a key role in developing the strategy in cardiovascular sciences and in the appointment of new group leaders. The Centre runs an active seminar programme and co-ordinates annual away days. The research in the Centre for Cardiovascular Sciences ranges from basic aspects of cardiovascular biology, through to animal models, the clinic and the community.

Research is divided into two main groupings:

CICS (Clinical and Integrated Cardiovascular Sciences)

Cardiovascular disease remains the single most important cause of death in the UK and Europe.  Clinical cardiovascular medicine and research has made impressive progress in the last decades, based on identification of key pathophysiological events such as coronary artery plaque rupture or the vicious regulatory circles causing systolic heart failure and subsequent rigorous evaluation of new therapeutic interventions in large controlled clinical trials. The CICS researchers have joined forces to use clinical and basic science approaches to tackle the emerging cardiovascular epidemics, especially atrial fibrillation and heart failure, which often develop in interaction between cardiac dysfunction and concomitant diseases such as chronic kidney disease and diabetes. 

Within CICS, we combine a broad range of expertise, ranging from epidemiological and population sciences, the design and conduct of clinical trials to mechanistic and complex physiological studies in animal models. There is particular expertise in the use of novel biomarkers and high level cardiovascular imaging as end-points in clinical studies designed to test new approaches to disease treatment prior to large scale mortality.  We also use models of  specific contributors to chronic cardiovascular disease, such as cardiomyopathies, sleep apnoea, diabetes, hypertension and exercise, which can be used to explore disease processes and to challenge genetic modifications known to cause cardiovascular disease. 

We apply our combined translational research power to develop new diagnostic and therapeutic approaches for atrial fibrillation, myocardial infarction, heart failure, hypertension and newly recognised factors including chronic kidney disease; all major current threats to cardiovascular health. Our work also benefits from a wider network of researchers and patients in Birmingham and beyond. 

Please find below links to the pages of CICS research groups:

 

Vascular Inflammation, Thrombosis and Angiogenesis (VITA)

This multidisciplinary research area brings together research in platelet signalling and function, leukocyte trafficking and endothelial cell biology, aiming to alleviate a variety of pathologies including thrombo-inflammatory vascular pathology, platelet function disorders and cancer angiogenesis, with major support from the British Heart Foundation.

Birmingham-based researchers have uncovered novel pathways controlling thrombosis and platelet formation, including signalling through the unique 'hemITAM' receptor CLEC-2, the platelet phosphatome and specific tyrosine phosphatases. They have also developed unique in vitro models to study regulation of vascular endothelium, uncovering roles of stromal cells and flow in chronic inflammation and angiogenesis.

Novel lipid mediators controlling neutrophil recruitment have been discovered and studies of reverse neutrophil migration extended to murine models, suggesting that these cells may contribute to lung pathology. Studies on endothelium have also revealed novel genes and pathways regulating angiogenesis. Our research has also played a leading role in clinical trials changing clinical practice in peripheral vascular disease (BASIL trial).

Please find below links to the pages of VITA research groups:

Other Useful Links