University of Wisconsin-Madison
Cardiovascular diseases remain a major health and economic burden worldwide. This is a consequence to the poor regenerative ability of the adult mammalian heart to repair itself in response to injury. Understanding the cellular and molecular events that control cardiomyocyte replenishment hold significant implications for treatment of human heart disease. In addition, employing the advancements in stem cell biology, cardiomyocyte differentiation and maturation represents an important therapeutic approach that remains to be harnessed for cardiac regeneration.
This collection will focus on currently established methods in the heart regeneration field. Both zebrafish and neonatal mice are model organisms to understand the mechanisms that guide endogenous heart regeneration following injury. In addition, embryonic stem (ES) and induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cell-derived cardiomyocytes have significant potential for disease modeling, as well as cellular therapy in heart regeneration. Furthermore, the direct reprogramming of cardiac fibroblasts into cardiomyocytes is a unique method for replacing the non-contractile scar with functional cardiomyocytes. The goal of this collection is to demonstrate the standardized protocols for cardiac injury, cardiomyocyte differentiation from pluripotent stem cells, and direct reprogramming. This collection will provide a platform for the multiple approaches currently used towards studying and promoting heart regeneration and to establish a unifying procedure for these methodologies.