This free webinar hosted by Scintica Instrumentation looked at the following: 1) Fibrosis– general introduction, 2) signaling pathways regulating cardiac fibrosis, 3) potential targets of cardiac fibrosis 4) techniques to measure cardiac fibrosis including using Doppler Flow Velocity measurements

The focus of the seminar was to present a comprehensive review of cardiac fibrosis from multiple aspects.

  • Background – Cardiac fibrosis constitutes a major health problem worldwide due to the large number of patients, the incomplete knowledge of the fibroblast differentiation, ECM composition and function, the absence of fully validated specific biomarkers, and, most importantly, the absence of effective disease-modifying therapeutic agents.
  • Focus of signaling pathways –This section will focus on understanding the signal integration and interplay between multiple pathways such as the TGF-β, WNT signaling that govern myofibroblast differentiation. The section will focus how these pathways connect at multiple levels of signal transduction in the context of myofibroblast function and fibrosis.
  • Focus on Diagnostic Tools – Will look at various invasive and non-invasive techniques to quantify the research e.g. The Doppler Flow Velocity method, which is a non-invasive way to measure cardiac function in small animals, and others.
  • Drug discovery scenario for different fibrotic diseases – There are multiple potential modulators that could be targeted for inhibition of the fibrotic response, including elimination of the primary cause or inhibition of the immunologic and inflammatory responses. This section of talk will discuss some recently identified potential targets for cardiac fibrosis.
  • Gaps in the field of fibrosis research: This section will discuss gaps in this field which need to be considered from presenter’s point of view when attempting to develop effective anti-fibrotic therapies such as need to study crosstalk of fibrosis with inflammation, need to combine state-of-art technology with contemporary research.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Current scenario of cardiac fibrosis research
  2. Understanding of available technologies
  3. Current progress and challenges in the cardiac fibrosis research

Rugmani Iyer PhD

Senior Scientist at Merck Research Laboratories

Rugmani Iyer is a senior scientist with Merck Research Laboratories. She is a Biochemistry major with PhD from University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. Before joining Merck, Rugmani was employed as a post-doctoral fellow and Instructor with University of Mississippi Medical Center. Her research focused on understanding the role of inflammation and fibrosis in regulating post-heart failure remodeling. Her current research interests focuses on 1) understanding the mechanism and signaling pathways of fibrosis, 2) how these mechanisms regulate different fibrotic diseases,  3) identify targets that can treat fibrosis.