We are investigating how drugs affect the cardiovascular system of healthy and diseased patient populations.
Drug-induced sudden cardiac death and heart abnormalities present challenges for researchers and regulators of medicinal products and are among the common reasons for drugs to be taken off the market.
The cardiology research group at Richmond Research Institute, studies drug-drug, drug-disease, and drug-patient characteristic interactions using electrocardiological (ECG) and biochemical analytical approaches.
We are interested in exploring the cardiac safety profile of new and existing medicines, and the biological mechanisms driving changes in cardiac health among diverse patient groups.
Each of our scientific leads focuses on different aspects of cardiac safety and mechanisms.
Dr. Jörg Täubel’s research examines the effects of cardiac ion channel-blocking drugs on ventricular repolarization delay in healthy individuals and those with diabetes type I and type II. Dr. Täubel is actively investigating the mechanisms through which female diabetic patients appear to be at greater risk of sudden cardiac death when taking medicines that impact repolarization delay. His findings help patients and regulators gain better insights into how QT-prolonging drugs should be administered and monitored in diabetics.
Professor Giuseppe Rosano oversees research to determine the effects of sex and sex hormones on QT-prolongation. Women typically have longer QT intervals and hence their proarrhythmic risk of QT-prolonging medicines is higher than that in men. In an ECG comparison of fluoroquinolone broad-spectrum antibiotics – moxifloxacin and levofloxacin – in men and women his team noted distinct differences in repolarization patterns between the sexes. These changes may be mediated by the influence of sex hormones on the balance of potassium channels IKr and IKs.
Dr. Boaz Mendzelevski studies the methods and analytical criteria of ECGs used in clinical trials. 12L Holter ECG recorders have become a standard in clinical trials as they provide continuous data while reducing the burden on the patient who is free to move around. This is particularly important during long trials. However, measurements are not as standardised as those of conventional ECG recordings. Traditional ECG recordings may thus provide a more accurate reflection of ECG changes. Dr. Mendzelevski’s research examines the modelling approaches that can be used to compare Holter recordings to traditional ECG recordings more effectively.