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Neurocardiac coculture approach to the long QT syndrome

36 months
Approved budget:
Dr Annika Winbo
Professor David Paterson
Associate Professor Rebecca-Ann Burton
Professor Jonathan Skinner
Professor Johanna Montgomery
Dr Adam Hill
Health issue:
Neurological (CNS)
Proposal type:
Lay summary
The long QT syndrome (LQTS), an inherited heart disease, is the most common cause of unexplained sudden death in young New Zealanders. Dangerous LQTS heart rhythms (arrhythmias) are typically triggered by activation of the sympathetic "fight or flight" nervous system. We propose to use a new approach that we have developed, studying the interaction between heart cells and sympathetic nerve cells grown from human patient stem cells in the laboratory, to better understand this specific trigger. By studying the communication between these cells, we aim to understand the mechanisms underlying inherited arrhythmia in LQTS, with the ultimate aim to identify novel neurocardiac targets and improve treatment strategies.