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Targeting novel lipids in an oral based treatment for the failing heart

Dr Yow Keat Tham, Institution: Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute

2021 Vanguard Grant  

Years funded: 2022-2022 


Cardiovascular disease remains the leading cause of death worldwide. New therapies are required to address this major unmet need. Lipids (molecules such as fats) are a major component of cell membranes including heart muscle cells. Recent studies have shown that lipids are altered in various pathologies, such as cardiovascular disease. Plasmalogens are a specific type of lipid that are enriched in the heart. Previous studies demonstrate that plasmalogen levels were reduced in a variety of disease settings such as atherosclerosis, and a dietary supplementation strategy conferred benefit against these disease types. 

The major aims of Dr Yow Keat Tham's research project is to:  

  1.  non-invasively increase plasmalogens levels in a preclinical model of heart failure via dietary supplementation, and 
  2. assess how increasing plasmalogen levels may benefit the failing heart.

Expected outcomes: Dietary supplementation will increase plasmalogen levels in the heart and confer benefit against heart failure.

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