Institute for Molecular Cardiology
This program has two major aims:
(1) to study the relationships between structure and function in cardiac ion channels and pumps and (2) to investigate how changes in the cardiac environment during development and pathologic states affect these proteins. Using a multidisciplinary approach that invokes biophysics, physiology, pharmacology, cell biology, and molecular biology, the Initiative is developing collaborative research and training programs that will be the foundation of a Cardiovascular Research Center. Specifically, it will augment its existing strengths in patch clamping, ion channel expression, and cardiac cell biology with genetic and molecular biology techniques that permit cloning and subsequent structure-function analysis of ion channels, pumps and exchangers. This information will be used to map binding sitesfor pharmacological agents, leading to rational drug design, and eventually to identify and analyze the genetic and physiological components and interactions that underlie cardiovascular diseases.