Flora Sam, MD
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I am a clinician-scientist performing translational science in both animal models and humans. Our research is focused on studying mechanisms of cardiac remodeling in hypertrophy, hypertension and heart failure (systolic and diastolic heart failure). We are currently studying: 1) pro-inflammatory and pro-fibrotic mechanisms that mediate cardiac remodeling in heart failure and hypertension; 2) the role of aldosterone in mediating the cardiac myocyte phenotype in cardiac remodeling; 3) the role of adipokines in cardiomyocyte remodeling and 4) cross-talk between cardiac myocytes and adipocytes. We are studying these mechanisms by using cultured cardiac myocytes (in vitro) and genetically-modified mice (in vivo), to determine the relationship between molecular/cellular events involved in cardiac remodeling and the changes in physiological function that can be assessed at the single myocyte and whole heart level in genetically-modified mice.
We are also investigating factors, which are important in inter-tissue communication in human heart failure. We are investigating the role of matrix markers in human subjects with cardiac amyloid and heart failure. Another major area of investigation in my research group is human diastolic heart failure (also known as “heart failure with preserved ejection fraction”).