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Patient-derived arteries in a box

Associate Professor Steven Wise, Institution: University of Sydney

2021 Vanguard Grant 

Years funded: 2022-2023  

One Australian suffers a heart attack every 10 minutes. Heart attacks are the most common cause of premature cardiovascular death and a major driver of disability. Despite the disease plaque developing over years, many patients will have no warning signs. While the key role of traditional risk factors are well established at a population level, there is no mechanism to explain the high proportion of patients (up to 27%) who have heart attacks is the absence of these factors. 

Associate Professor Steven Wise and team have developed a “blood vessel-in-a-box” system, that replicates the pressure, flow and shear found in human blood vessels while sustaining vascular cells for several weeks in the lab. Using this powerful tool, the team propose to culture patient-derived cells collected in a nation-wide cohort study and biobank. Associate Professor Steven Wise aims to show the feasibility of identifying novel phenotypes and markers from these distinct patient populations, when grown in conditions mimicking in vivo, with the ultimate goal of unlocking new mechanisms and drivers of cardiovascular disease.

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