Heart research & animal models

The UK British Heart Foundation (BHF) charity has published a round-up of its current funded research to treat heart disease, including examples of the use of CRISPR and animal models.

Using the Nobel Prize-winning genetic scissors (CRISPR-Cas9), UK scientists are currently working on these projects:

  • At Imperial College London, researchers are using CRISPR in human blood vessel cells, and mice and rats, to study pulmonary arterial hypertension – a condition where the pressure in the blood vessels supplying the lungs rises, which can lead to heart failure.

  • With a zebrafish model, scientists at the University of Sheffield are using CRISPR to find out why mutations in genes can cause babies to be born with heart defects.

  • Scientists at the University of Oxford are using CRISPR to find out how to repair heart damage after injury in zebrafish and new-born mice.

  • Meanwhile, a team at University of Birmingham is using CRISPR to study thrombocytopenia – a condition where someone has low levels of platelets in their blood – in mice.

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