Tackling Arrhythmia

Center for Arrhythmia Research

Irregular heart rhythms or arrhythmias are a major cause of stroke, heart failure or death. Atrial fibrillation, the most common sustained arrhythmia, affects 3 million people in the United States. Ventricular fibrillation is the major cause of sudden cardiac death, which kills 300,000 Americans each year. But our world-renowned team of experts in the Center for Arrhythmia Research is relentlessly pursuing solutions. An unprecedented union of clinical, basic and translational researchers co-located in the Cardiovascular Research Center at the North Campus Research Complex, the group is positioned for breakthroughs in the very near future. In just one example, our researchers are reprogramming ordinary human skin cells to generate three-dimensional heart blocks that contract and can undergo arrhythmias just like a human heart. With further development, this and other breakthroughs open the door to new understanding and therapies — including the possibility of cardiac heart muscle regeneration and targeted cellular ablation.